Muscat: Duqm Refinery recently launched its second edition of Marefa initiative yesterday in Crowne Plaza Hotel Duqm. The initiative includes a series of training courses aimed at local entrepreneurs, universities and colleges students in addition to employees from the public and private sector in Al Wusta Governorate.
The Marefa initiative in its second year includes a number of topics relevant to entrepreneurship and the establishment of small and medium size enterprises. The training courses will be delivered by professional trainers to transfer knowledge and expertise to the participants in the courses. The second edition of Marefa initiative comes in continuity to the success achieved by the previous edition and was warmly received by the local community.
On this occasion, Nas-ha bint Mohammed Al Fallahia, General Manager for Corporate Affairs at Duqm Refinery stated “As one of the strategic projects in the Sultanate, Duqm Refinery is committed to enhance the development of local communities through the implementation of a number of social investment programs that aims at empowering Omani youth and encouraging them to start their own small and medium sized enterprises. Furthermore, our social investment initiatives aim at creating awareness on best practices to ensure success and sustainability of their businesses”.
Jasim bin Hassan Al Ajmi, Head of Corporate Sustainability stated “Our social investment programs aim at widening the benefits of those programs by linking them with the needs of the market and by encouraging the participants to apply what they have learnt from these training courses in practice. We also aim at encouraging Omani youth to be self-reliant and to contribute to the growth and development of local economy”.
The second edition of Marefa includes four rounds of training courses distributed over a period of 12 months. The training courses combine the theory and practical applications in entrepreneurship and covers areas of the financial management of the projects, marketing and branding. The first and second training courses will cover a number of areas such as market research, selecting the right services or products and targeting the right customer group. The third training course will discuss the financial management of the project and the management of cash flow to achieve sustainability. The fourth training course will shed light on the importance of marketing communications and branding in the success of SMEs. Key Performance Indicators will be discussed as part of each course to enable the participants to monitor the progress of their projects and to enhance points of strength and to fix any issues to avoid failure.
The first round of Marefa 2 training courses lasted for two days with thirty participants divided into six groups. Each group will include five members who were tasked to develop a proposal for a business project initiating it from the early planning stages, passing through the implementation of the business idea and finally with the evaluation stage.
Salim bin Sulayim Al Junaibi , a participant in the training course said “I am glad to be part of Marefa 2 training courses which I found very useful and I look forward to practice what I have learnt in the market. These courses aims at preparing local youth to invest in future opportunities that will emerge from the refinery project as well as the other projects in the Special Economic Zone Authority for Duqm in the coming future”
Also, Raja bint Ahmed Al Junaibia, a participant in the course commented on her participation in the courses saying that “Marefa 2 enhanced my knowledge and expertise in the field of entrepreneurship and the management of SMEs. Also, these courses polished my personal skills such as leading initiatives and being positive in life in general. Also, these courses provided us with fundamental concepts in management, marketing and financial control. Currently I work on a home business to sell coffee and soft drinks and I am planning to expand the business. To achieve this target, I joined these training courses to benefit from the theoretical and practical content of the courses”.
By actively investing on social responsibility initiatives, Duqm Refinery aims at engaging all segments of the society in those programs. One example of Duqm Refinery CSR initiatives is “The Science of the Refinery” initiative which is one of the initiatives that aims at Inspiring school children in STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). Also, “Wadha” initiative is Duqm Refinery flagship program to tackle issues around empowering and building capacity of women in Al Wusta region and across the Sultanate.
In addition to that, Duqm Refinery created a special program for its staff to encourage them to be volunteers in its CSR initiatives called “Sawaed”. The program aims at encouraging employees to dedicate part of their time to help implementing those initiatives in the Governorate of Al Wusta and across the Sultanate.