On 18th November 1940, the current leader of Oman, His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said, was born in Al Hisn Palace in Salalah, Dhofar. Thirty years later, 23 July 1970, also in Al Hisn Palace, the modernization of Oman took place. In ‘Whispers of Oman,’ my latest publication, ‘Women’ tell stories about their live in the Sultanate.
Some of their stories are closely related with the beginning of commemorating the National Day’s. Today it is the 47th National Day commemoration. To understand how things evolved it is always good to look back at the past…not to forget…
In His Majesty’s speech of 18th November 1972, one can read:
“Education was my great concern, and I saw it was necessary to direct efforts to spread education….” “In the field of Health, the Ministry of Health has made every endeavour to bring medical services to the citizens in every place…”
In ‘Whispers of Oman,’ 2015/2016, the story of Dr. Aida Slayem Salemin Al-Hajry, tells: “Education in the villages and certainly in the remote villages in the mountains was non-existent…” “To bring changes we dealt with key figures in the villages… By offering dates and coffee…we gave lectures and advices…When women wanted to study the Ministry of Education provided books and teachers…The Ministry of Health established health centers…because health care was done in the old traditional ways, we faced many myths and superstitious matters to deal with…” ‘Because Women matters….’ became the title of Al-Hajry story.
In ‘Taking care,’ Amira, supervisor of the Maternity Unit, labor room and special baby care unit at the public Sultan Qaboos hospital in Dhofar takes us on a journey as a midwife. At a certain moment she tells: “It’s a pity that my grandmother from my father’s side could not enjoy the day that I became a midwife. She was a very famous midwife in Dhofar. She died during the Dhofar War, before 1970. She delivered a lot of babies at home. She spent three or four days with the mother and the newborn baby. The older women still remember her. She became my example how to care…”
In 1998, Najat Saif Mohammed Al-Busaidy, became the first Occupational Therapist in Oman. “ Working with the disabled is all about the Art of Giving…” she stated in her story we called ‘I have a dream.’ Because this senior occupational therapist and chairperson of the ‘Association of Early Intervention for Children with Disabilities,’ is still busy full filling her dreams and the dreams of all the participants involved….
…as more women were involved in the making of ‘Whispers of Oman,’ the only women book in Oman of that kind.