Wizrah and chemise: Traditional dress of Al-Dayer coffee bean farmers

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Children and parents on coffee farms enjoy the harvest, reflecting the value of the coffee tree among locals. (Supplied)
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An Al-Dayer man in traditional attire harvest coffee at his plantation. (Supplied)
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An Al-Dayer man in traditional attire harvest coffee at his plantation. (Supplied)
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Al-Dayer coffee farmers are keen to have their children take part in the process of caring for the trees and harfesting the beans. (Supplied)
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Children aAl-Dayer coffee farmers are keen to have their children take part in the process of caring for the trees and harfesting the beans. (Supplied)nd parents on coffee farms enjoy the harvest, reflecting the value of the coffee tree among locals. (Supplied)
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Updated 21 January 2021

Wizrah and chemise: Traditional dress of Al-Dayer coffee bean farmers

  • The folk dress, which normally consists of two pieces, has been closely linked to the Khawlani coffee plantations in southern Saudi Arabia

JEDDAH: With their traditional outfit, coffee tree farmers in Jazan are preparing to host the eighth Coffee Beans Festival, which kicks off on Jan. 30.

The folk dress, which normally consists of two pieces, has been closely linked to the Khawlani coffee plantations in southern Saudi Arabia.

Indicating the importance of the Khawlani coffee tree in the hearts of its farmers, they wear the most luxurious clothing during the most crucial stages of the coffee trade, from planting the seedlings to selling the product.

Speaking to Arab News, Zahir Al-Maliki, publication administrator at the annual festival’s media committee, said that coffee farmers in southern Saudi Arabia — especially in the Bani Malik Mountains in Al-Dayer governorate east of the Jazan region — keep their old folk dresses, which children inherit from their fathers.




Al-Dayer coffee farmers are keen to have their children take part in the process of caring for the trees and harfesting the beans. (Supplied)

“There is still a large majority of the population that uses this dress and maintains it to the present day. The folk dress, locally called mountain dress, consists of a chemise (shirt), wizrah (skirt) and an aromatic headband,” he said.

He added that they use the same English word, chemise, to refer to the garment for the upper body.  

The shirt usually consists of one color and the men wear a belt that contains a Janbiyah (dagger with a short-curved blade with a medial ridge).

They also wear a headband, which consists of aromatic plants  such as kadi, wormwood and Arabian Jasmine.

Children and parents on coffee farms enjoy the harvest, reflecting the value of the coffee tree among locals. “People in southern Saudi Arabia view coffee as an integral part of their life,” Al-Maliki noted, adding that children also put on the same outfit and help their fathers with the trees.

HIGHLIGHT

Indicating the importance of the Khawlani coffee tree in the hearts of its farmers, they wear the most luxurious clothing during the most crucial stages of the coffee trade, from planting the seedlings to selling the product.

“Coffee farmers are keen to have their children take part in the process of caring for the trees, and children on most Khawlani coffee plantations in Al-Dayer wear folk dresses, adhering to heritage and reviving ancient customs,” he said.

Al-Maliki pointed out that wearing Janbiyah symbolizes courage and generosity, inspired by the tough nature of the surrounding mountains, in which farmers of the region have grown up. “When wearing Janbiyah, people usually show how proud they are of their ancestors’ traditions and customs. It also reminds them of the deep-rooted culture of their forefathers.”

Al-Maliki said they did not worry about children carrying blades because the people of the mountains are known for their tolerance and spontaneous, reconciliatory nature.

“People here are raised on cooperation, solidarity and altruism. Children wear Janbiyah only for adornment, and they are very proud of it, as it is part of the history of their descendants, exactly like their pride in caring for coffee trees,” he said.

According to Al-Maliki, locals treat coffee trees the way mothers look after their babies, calling it the most pampered tree in the area. “We call them the ‘spoiled trees’ because they need more care and attention than the other plants.”

It is common that this responsibility falls to men. However, he added, women sometimes do the task when men are away.




Al-Dayer coffee farmers are keen to have their children take part in the process of caring for the trees and harfesting the beans. (Supplied)

He estimated that there are more than 122,455 coffee trees in Al-Dayer governorate. “There are more than 171,380 coffee trees in the Jazan region. These produce up to 685,536 tons of coffee beans. However, Al-Dayer area produces more than 489, 820 tons of coffee beans, making it the capital of the Khawlani coffee beans in the Kingdom.”

There are over 1,596 coffee tree farmers in the Jazan region. More than 919 of these are located in Al-Dayer governorate.

This season, the organizing committee of the festival has set up a special health administration, whose role is to make sure — with cooperation with health authorities — that all measures are followed throughout the seven-day festival, in order to ensure the safety of the visitors.

The new administration will monitor social distancing and ensure masks are worn inside the festival site.


Saudi Arabia announces 4 more COVID-19 deaths

Updated 07 March 2021

Saudi Arabia announces 4 more COVID-19 deaths

  • The total number of recoveries in the Kingdom has increased to 370,614
  • A total of 6,528 people have succumbed to the virus in the Kingdom so far

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia announced four deaths from COVID-19 and 357 new infections on Sunday.
Of the new cases, 188 were recorded in Riyadh, 54 in Makkah, 51 in the Eastern Province, 13 in Madinah, eight in the Northern Borders region, six in Asir, five in Hail, two in Jazan and one in Najran.
The total number of recoveries in the Kingdom increased to 370,614 after 314 more patients recovered from the virus.
A total of 6,528 people have succumbed to the virus in the Kingdom so far.


Saudi nonprofit provides underprivileged families with 1,000 meals a day

The initiative, which kicked off on Feb. 14, was planned to run for 30 days, but could be extended. (Supplied)
Updated 07 March 2021

Saudi nonprofit provides underprivileged families with 1,000 meals a day

  • ‘We intend to do whatever we can to ensure the distribution of food to those in need during pandemic’

RIYADH: A Riyadh charity is distributing 1,000 meals a day to underprivileged families who have been badly affected by the ongoing coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

Founded by Riyadh’s governor, Prince Faisal bin Bandar bin Abdul Aziz, the Khairat program helps ensure that low-income families in the Kingdom’s capital have access to two full, healthy, and balanced meals a day, taking care of not only the cooking process, but also the distribution to those in need.
Abdullah Al-Sebai, the general supervisor of Khairat, told Arab News that the program was initially established in 2018 as a means of collecting leftover food from banquet halls, weddings, and other major events where a surplus tends to be left.


“Our team would collect the leftover food from these events, package it up neatly, and distribute it to families in need,” he said.
However, once the pandemic shut down those large-scale gatherings, the team at Khairat quickly found a solution that would ensure those families would not be left in the lurch.


“With the green light from Prince Faisal, we established a professional relationship with a kitchen belonging to the charity Al-Melwan, who have employed seven Saudi women to cook the necessary meals for distribution,” Al-Sebai added. “Khairat purchased the meals from them and is responsible for the delivery on a daily basis.”
Once the food has been prepared by the team at Al-Melwan’s kitchen, Al-Sebai said that the meals go out twice a day — 500 lunches and 500 dinners, all delivered within half an hour to the families that the charity has had longstanding dealings with.
The initiative, which kicked off on Feb. 14, was planned to run for 30 days, but could be extended.
“We intend to do whatever we can to ensure that these families aren’t in any danger due to the pandemic,” he said.
To maintain their services alongside Al-Melwan’s, the charity also coordinated with a number of restaurants to provide meals, and private entities that have also contributed to their food distribution. Over 27,000 meals were distributed to around 4,500 families in 13 neighborhoods across Riyadh between Feb. 12-28 as a result.
Khairat is accepting donations, both in the form of monetary contributions, and applications from donors such as banquet halls, hotels, and other event-hosting venues, on their website, https://khiyrat.org.sa/en/.

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Updated 06 March 2021

Who’s Who: Dr. Yasser Al-Aska, director general of the Saudi Patient Safety Center

Dr. Yasser Al-Aska has been director general of the Saudi Patient Safety Center (SPSC) since February. The center aims to raise awareness of patient safety and strengthen and improve the culture of best practices in patient safety in all health institutions throughout the Kingdom.

It also conducts research to improve the quality of health facilities, especially with regard to patient safety.
Al-Aska received a bachelor’s degree in medicine from King Saud University (KSU) in 2006. He also obtained an Arab Board of Emergency Medicine certification from the Arab Board of Health Specializations in 2012.
That year, he was also granted the same certification from the Saudi Commission of Health Specialties. From 2017 to 2020, he directed KSU’s Clinical Skills and Simulation Center (KSU-CSSC).
Al-Aska, who has been an emergency medicine assistant professor at KSU since 2016, was also deputy director of KSU-CSSC from 2016 to 2017. Al-Aska also worked as director of the residency training program and postgraduate studies at KSU’s department of emergency medicine.
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From 2007 to 2012, he worked as an emergency medicine resident at King Khalid University. For nearly one year beginning in 2013, he served as a fellow at the Lifespan Medical Simulation Center, Rhode Island, US.
From 2013 to 2015, he worked as a teaching fellow of disaster medicine and emergency preparedness at Brown University.
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Malaysian PM arrives in Jeddah ahead of Umrah

Updated 07 March 2021

Malaysian PM arrives in Jeddah ahead of Umrah

  • Muhyiddin Yassin will perform Umrah

LONDON: Malaysia’s prime minister arrived in Jeddah on Saturday ahead of performing Umrah.
Muhyiddin Yassin, who was photographed wearing an Ihram, was received on arrival at King Abdulaziz International Airport by the the Kingdom’s ambassador to Malaysia Mahmoud Qattan.
He was also greeted by the governor of Jeddah Prince Mishaal bin Majed bin Abdul Aziz and other officials.

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Saudi Arabia boosts health checks, 382 new coronavirus cases reported

Updated 07 March 2021

Saudi Arabia boosts health checks, 382 new coronavirus cases reported

  • The total number of recoveries in the Kingdom has increased to 370,300
  • A total of 6,524 people have succumbed to the virus in the Kingdom so far

JEDDAH: Saudi authorities have warned that health inspections will increase ahead of the reopening of restaurants, gyms and cinemas across the Kingdom on Sunday.
The Kingdom reported 382 new coronavirus cases on Saturday, increasing the total number of infections over the course of the pandemic to 379,474.
There are 2,650 active cases, 494 of which are in critical care — a decrease of 15 in the past day.
Around the Kingdom, 183 of the cases were reported in the Riyadh region, 89 in the Eastern Province and 43 in Makkah. Jazan and Najran both reported three cases each.
There were also 378 new recoveries, raising the total recovery count to 370,300. The Kingdom’s recovery rate now stands at 97.58 percent.
Saturday saw five new coronavirus-related deaths. The Kingdom’s death toll is now 6,524.
More than 13.9 million PCR tests have been conducted in the Kingdom, with 48,078 completed in the past 24 hours.

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370,300 Recoveries

6,524 Deaths

Saudi health clinics set up by the ministry as testing hubs or treatment centers have helped hundreds of thousands of people around the Kingdom since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic. Among those testing hubs are Taakad (make sure) centers and Tetamman (rest assured) clinics.
Taakad centers provide testing for those who show no or mild symptoms or believe they have come into contact with an infected individual, while the Tetamman clinics offer treatment and advice to those with virus symptoms, such as fever, loss of taste and smell and breathing difficulties.
Appointments to either service can also be made through the ministry’s Sehhaty app.

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