‘Saudi Friends’ initiative hosts American youth in tour of kingdom

The ‘Saudi Friends’ initiative was designed to engage with youth from different countries to increase cultural understanding

Shounaz Meky - Al Arabiya News
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A delegation of American youth is taking a tour in Saudi Arabia, visiting several cultural, scientific and technology sites as part of an initiative to introduce the kingdom to the young people around world

The visit is part of the “Saudi Friends” national volunteer initiative, which aims to extend ties with youth from around the world and introduce them to the Saudi culture.

“The ‘Saudi Friends’ initiative aims to promote our culture and highlight the pioneer aspects of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,” said Bader Alshehri, the group’s co-founder.

The initiative was designed to engage with youth from different countries to increase cultural understanding. It was created in 2014 by a group of Saudi youth under the patronage of Saudi Prince Turki Bin Abdullah.

A Brazilian delegation from San Paulo was the first to visit the Kingdom last year as part of the initiative.

This year, an American delegation, made of five U.S. university students, are taking part in the tour.

They visited the King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology on Tuesday and were introduced to the Molecular Beam Epitaxy, one of many methods used in depositing single crystals.

They also paid a visit to the Mishkat Interactive Exhibition for Atomic and renewable energy. In addition to the Saudi Heritage Preservation Society, where they had a glimpse of the country’s rich cultural heritage.

The initiative, Alshehri says, was inspired by the tendency to build friendships, transfer and share cultural beliefs with others.

“We are looking forward to reaching the ‘Friends of Saudi Arabia’ from all over the world,” he told al Arabiya News

“Our mission is to portray the real image of Saudi Arabia and shed light on the progress that has been achieved.”

“We aim to clarify misconceptions about our culture in the eyes of the West,” he added.

Alshehri said the initiative eyes expansion and looks forward to hosting youth from other countries, including China and Europe.

He said Saudi scholarship students studying abroad take part in recommending friends who are interested in knowing more about the Saudi culture.

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