Saudi royal was appointed the president of the Saudi Humane Society in January
Prince Khaled bin Alwaleed is aiming to tackle the problem of stray animals in Saudi cities, as part of his new role as president of the Saudi Humane Society (SHS), he said in a recent interview.
The prince, who is the son of prominent Saudi billionaire businessman Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, was appointed president of the SHS in January this year. The SHS is described as 'a group of committed individuals that have formed an interconnected network of volunteers, aided by dedicated professionals in the field, to help animals in need'.
“I happily accepted the role as I believe I can add value there," Prince Khalid told Arab News in an interview published at the weekend.
The prince said he had developed a set of new two, five and 10-year goals for SHS, the first being the introduction of TNR (Trap-Neuter-Release) programmes to try and tackle the problem of stray animals in some Saudi cities.
“This issue wasn’t dealt with humanely in the past, and the important thing is that moving forward we work toward preventing these incidents from happening again. The Minister of Municipal and Rural Affairs, HE Eng. Abdullatif bin Abdulmalik Al-Sheikh, banned animal poisoning; a noteworthy first step in the right direction, followed by TNR,” he said.
SHS is also planning to work closely with the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) to combat the transport of exotic animals in the kingdom.
“We’ll be collaborating with the government on recommendations on how to best operate the sanctuaries, introduce animals back into the wild, and also educate the public on the importance and absolute necessity of biodiversity,” he said.
The society is also looking to younger Saudis, to educate them in animal husbandry and the humane treatment of animals.
“Activating our youth across everything we do is how we really activate Saudi, whether it is for animal welfare or for our work with health and wellness. There has been a slew of volunteers coming to donate their time, effort and their emotion to these animals. We are so blessed to have a relationship with these people, they’re passionate and they really care. They will work on a TNR programme in Madina, starting from the university in Taibah where they’ll trap, neuter then relocate the animals in other areas,” he said.
Prince Khaled founded his own company, KBW Ventures, in 2014, and invests in a range of sectors, from technology start-ups to veganism.