One of the highlights of living in an expat country is that I get to peek into the lives of different nationalities on a regular basis. I photograph Qatari engagements which are truly eye opening affairs. I am mesmerised each time. Unfortunately, for privacy reasons, images from these events cannot be used but I’m so blessed to have witnessed them. I capture the familiarity of the Irish which always brings a smile to my face. British, German, Canadian, American, French, Greek, Slovakian, Indian…the list goes on. I watch as each family unit observes different traditions, culture and religion and it warms my heart that my children will have open hearts and minds with regards to the different nationalities they play and learn with everyday. Fear of the unknown or the new is one of the biggest causes of hostility between nations in my opinion and I’m glad that my little ones will grow up with an awareness and an acceptance that we are a multi cultural world.
Here are a few facts about our chosen country of residence. In 1951, there was a total population of 26,237 in Qatar. Today there are 2,307,218. Qatar (Arab) nationals make up less than 15% of the total population, followed by other Arab (13%), Indian (24%), Nepali (16%), Filipino (11%) and Bangladesh and Sri Lankan (5% each). There are 250,000 Filipinos in the country, making them the third largest group of expatriates. Due to a huge influx of male laborers, women account for just 25% of the population.