DIFI forum addresses marriage challenges faced by Arab families

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The social, cultural, and educational importance of marriage – both for individuals and for society — and how it is being affected by a changing world has been highlighted during the Arab Family Forum on Marriage: Research and Policy Perspectives.

The forum, organised by Doha International Family Institute (DIFI), is taking place at Qatar National Convention Center, with H E Sheikha Hind bint Hamad Al Thani, Vice-Chairperson and CEO of Qatar Foundation, and Machaille Al Naimi, President of Community Development, Qatar Foundation, is among those who attended its opening.

It is providing a platform for discussing the findings of newly-launched research reports by DIFI – a member of Qatar Foundation – on marriage in the Arab world, with policy-makers, researchers, experts, service providers, and representatives of civil society and regional organizations all participating. DIFI has produced reports titled The State of Marriage in the Arab World and Marital Education Programs in the Arab World.

Dr Haifa Abu Ghazaleh, Assistant Secretary-General and Head of the Social Affairs Sector at the Arab League, was the forum’s keynote speaker, saying: “I am delighted to be in Doha, and there are many indications around us that show this country is continuously thriving. This forum reflects Qatar’s commitment to addressing one of the main issues affecting the Arab world. It is a challenge that has not been sufficiently addressed before due to the negative factors that affect it, but if it remains unaddressed, it may negatively reflect the Arab world as a whole.”

“The biggest challenge faced by Arab families in some countries relates to the negative impact of recent conflicts and wars, and the consequent waves of migrants and displaced people that have affected the components of the family unit.” 

She added: “There is no doubt that the institution of marriage is facing a serious crisis. According to the DIFI report’s statistics, many societies have high levels of separation and divorce. The report clearly presents the different dimensions and issues surrounding marriage in the Arab world, including the context of the marriage context, its patterns, age, and marital relations, among others. We appreciate all the efforts invested in producing this report, and would like to extend our thanks and congratulations to DIFI and everyone involved in this process.”

Giving the forum’s welcoming remarks, Dr Sharifa Noaman Al Emadi, Executive Director of DIFI, said: “This forum was organised to discuss DIFI’s report on the state of marriage. 

“Some may wonder about the reason for discussing the state of marriage. Too often, the focus is on highlighting issues related to divorce, but I believe that we should focus instead on the topic of marriage because it also faces many challenges.”

The first day of the forum included three sessions, respectively focusing on the state of marriage in the GCC, across the wider Middle East, and in North Africa.  

 

On its second day, sessions at the event will analyse the state of marriage across the Arab world as a whole, as well as marital education programs. 

Source: www.thepeninsulaqatar.com

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