PR: HSBC searches for young leaders in the Middle East

Offscreen Expedition 2010 Encounter Edu

HSBC in partnership with Offscreen Expeditions and the British Council is launching a regional competition to offer students from Jordan, Kuwait and Qatar the chance to take part in the journey of a lifetime to the UK.

Now in its third year, the cross-cultural exchange programme is an award-winning collaboration between HSBC in the Community Middle East Foundation and Offscreen Expeditions, which was founded in 2006 to forge creative links and cultural understanding between the UK and the Middle East.

The competition is being launched simultaneously in Jordan, Kuwait and Qatar on 22 March 2010. Kaltham Al Koheji, HSBC Regional Head of Corporate Sustainability, "We are looking for aspiring young leaders who have the ability to communicate cross cultural understanding through the power of art, film, photography or writing. HSBC invests in the creative potential of the new generation and gives them this chance to develop their skills and follow their dreams."

The winning group will then tour the UK in July, making art in response to their surroundings as well as collaborating on projects with British students their own age. Using the latest technology, they will document their activities online, allowing thousands of young people across the Middle East to be part of the journey virtually.

Stephen Stapleton, Offscreen Expeditions director, explained: “The aim of the project is to give young people from the UK and the Middle East the chance to communicate and learn from each other in a positive and creative way."

Expedition leader and co-director, Jamie Buchanan-Dunlop added, “We are so used to seeing the Middle East through Western eyes, and I think it will be deeply insightful to see how the Middle East sees the UK through the eyes of a new generation.

About HSBC in the Community Middle East Foundation
HSBC has a long-standing commitment to the community, the bank supports all the communities in which it operates both through the involvement of its employees and through donations. The bank encourages its staff to share their skills and realise their full potential as citizens by engaging in local community projects.

The HSBC in the Community Middle East Foundation was established in 1996 to fund community projects and activities across the region. The Foundation funds educational, environmental and community projects. The formation of the Foundation underlines the Bank's long association with the region and its continued commitment to the Middle East. An Advisory Committee made up of senior executives of HSBC Bank Middle East Limited is based in Dubai and all proposals for funding through the Foundation are considered by committee members before being passed to the Foundation's Trustees for approval.

About Offscreen Expeditions
Offscreen Expeditions is an expedition-based education programme run by three UK-based educational social enterprises: the Offscreen Education Programme, Digital Explorer and Bold Creative. Since the first Offscreen Expedition in 2007, the programme has garnered international praise and awards for its much-needed work in developing greater understanding between young people in the UK and the Middle East. See our previous expeditions

22 March 2010