OLG promotes cultural programs
The Oriental Ladies Group (OLG), with members from 7 Asian countries — Bangladesh, Brunei Darussalam, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Nepal and Pakistan, met at the Indonesian ambassador’s residence on May 22 in Riyadh to discuss and exchange views on a number of issues related to the customs and traditions, history and home sciences of the respective countries.
OLG, a Riyadh-based social organization formed by the spouses of heads of foreign diplomatic missions in the capital held discussions on activities to promote culture and ethnic diversity among members of the diplomatic community in Saudi Arabia.
Farzana Mannan, president of OLG, said that “This meeting is special for the group as we take the opportunity to welcome our new patron Yasmin Sukmawira Fachir, wife of the ambassador of Indonesia and also bid farewell to our departing patron Aneela Naeem Khan who will be moving to Jeddah following the election of Pakistan’s Ambassador Muhammad Naeem Khan as the Organization of Islamic Cooperation’s Assistant Secretary General for Science and Technology.”
Representing Indonesia, Yasmin Fachir, the host for the general meeting, who arrived in the Kingdom on a mission just two months ago, welcomed fellow patrons and said, “We sincerely hope that the promotion of some of our cultural heritages and wealth would help enrich the knowledge about Indonesia.”
During the event, members were introduced to the fascinating traditional craft of Indonesian ‘Batik’.
“Batik has been designated by UNESCO as a ‘Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity’ and originates from the island of Java. The art has assumed global popularity,” she added.
“Today, we have arranged a Batik making activity for our guests as an extension to serve the main objective of the organization for cultural exchange,” said Fachir.
The art of textile printing ‘Batik’ was presented and demonstrated by Indonesian artist Lukman Fauzi, an expert in traditional art forms and cultures of Indonesia. Fauzi introduced the basic technique of wax-resist dying, its theme and unique patterns of Batik as the members participated in the interesting activity of making Batik.
The guests enjoyed the flavors of ‘Fascinating Indonesia’ in its ethnic setting and Indonesian cuisine personally supervised by Fachir.
“After several years of unparalleled success in holding annual cultural events, family bazaars and various charitable works, we have decided to take advantage of new opportunities,” said Farzana Mannan.
The agenda for the meeting, discussed the proposal for the forthcoming Blood Donation Program, the Culinary Presentation at the Bangladesh Embassy premises and the scheduled launch of the organization’s annual magazine – the OLG Annual Gazette , and the annual charitable bazaar to be held in November 2014.
The wife of the Indian ambassador, Asiya Hamid Rao, an active patron of the club, appreciated the dedicated efforts of all OLG members for working hand in hand toward the objective and mission of the organization, to promote mutual understanding and friendship among different countries and cultures here.
“In future, OLG hopes to invite more guests from different countries including Saudi women and journalists during meetings and cultural shows and further share the opportunity to exchange knowledge and cultures,” she added.
The Oriental Ladies Group (OLG) was founded in February 1986. In previous years, OLG has funded various charitable works and reached out to the poor and needy people in member countries while sponsoring the education of cash-strapped students.