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Ugandan expatriates visit NMOQ to learn about Qatar’s rich culture and heritage
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Ugandan expatriates visit NMOQ to learn about Qatar’s rich culture and heritage

Catherine W Gichuki 
Members of the Ugandan Community in Qatar (UGACOQ) recently visited the National Museum of Qatar (NMoQ) to learn about the unique story of Qatar and its people.
The museum showcases Qatar’s rich culture and heritage and the association it has with other countries and peoples around the world.
Some of the members were visiting the NMoQ for the first time. Earlier, they had gathered at the Museum of Islamic Art (MIA) for an iftar during the last Friday of holy month of Ramadan. 
UGACOQ Secretary Martha Anyait told Qatar Tribune that it was a great opportunity for them to learn about Qatar’s rich traditions by visiting the new museum. “After the main gathering at MIA Park, members visited the new National Museum of Qatar with the aim of learning about the history, heritage and culture of Qatar. The trip was much appreciated by some members who were visiting the ‘Desert Rose’ for the first time.”
The NMoQ building is by a desert rose and the beautiful design was conceived by French architect Jean Nouvel. Desert rose is found in Qatar’s arid areas. 
According to Anyait, this was the third edition of UGACOQ iftar gathering, which falls on the last Friday of the Ramadan month and the group meets at the MIA Park. 
“This year, the gathering was three times bigger compared to previous years mainly because of the increased number of Ugandans in Qatar. We also have excellent communication channels in UGACOQ.”
According to the officials, this model of the group coming together follows the African way of communal gatherings. In the ancient African culture, the whole village would gather on occasions like celebrating a victory in a war, birth of a baby, or welcoming a new planting season after a fruitful harvest. “On these occasions, every family would bring food, meat, drinks and all would play a role in the success of the gathering. Often this would be done in the evenings around a fire coupled with music and dance. Everyone was required to attend with the village chief as the guest of honour,” said Anyait.
The UGACOQ iftar gathering, she noted, always brings together Ugandans and friends from other nationalities in the spirit of sharing the brotherhood and friendship they enjoy in Qatar. “As it is the very essence of Ramadan, sharing with others is the main theme. Every member brings something edible which is added to the bigger pool. Some cook Ugandan local dishes while others buy ready-made stuff.”
Anyait urged all Ugandans in Qatar to embrace the UGACOQ membership registration because of the trend they were seeing as a community -- the process of building bridges among themselves (the gaps are mainly in the area of sharing meaningful opportunities among the Ugandan professionals and their welfare). “We need to know each other in an accurate manner, with real facts concerning us. We are ascending to greater levels. From the opening of the embassy to member registration, and very soon we’ll be talking about pending projects that are of utmost importance to us as a people who share common aspirations.”
Fahad Lubega, one of UGACOQ’s committee members, also called upon the Ugandans to adopt the culture of togetherness and help each other just like members of other nationalities are doing.
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