Without a doubt, Covid19 has put the world to a near standstill. We’d gotten bombarded by now some of the very popular words that define 2020 — pandemic, home quarantine, institutional isolation, and of course coronavirus and Covid19. Public places and many business outlets were closed and because of stringent measures not only in Oman but all over the world, many opportunities died. But some opportunities were also born.
Looking after the welfare of the youth of Oman, the National Youth Committee recently reached out to some Omani youth to study the condition of the youth sector and understand how some of them are coping up with the pandemic.
The youth organization has discovered that many of Oman’s young people have a positive outlook despite the grim conditions. So what keeps Oman’s young artists, entrepreneurs, designers, craftsmen and jewelers, athletes, technicians, programmers and innovators, students, job seekers, employees, and workers busy?
Mazen al Bassami, an artist who specializes in woodworking said, “Due to the Coronavirus and cessation of [public] activities, I was allowed to delve deeper into producing different and unique artworks like tables made with local wood mixed with epoxy – a hardening material to cover wood pores. “
“I had the opportunity to brainstorm in-depth and started working on new collections. I have several unique set of designs because people nowadays wanted something special. I encourage people to look at the situation positively and consider it as the perfect time to have a change of perspective to be successful. It is the best time to be busy and amp up your productivity,” he said.
Morouj Saadia, a consultant in the field of technology and entrepreneur, said: “In light of the current conditions, our lives have turned into a highly digital routine. As a mentor to entrepreneurs in the technical field, I worked with about 17 startups in exploiting the pandemic to seize opportunities and work on challenges.”
She added, “While challenged by difficult conditions under this pandemic, a group of those companies has been able to activate their operations and start work to serve their customers while others have focused on exploring the needs of their customers and preparing to meet them as soon as conditions resume to normal.”
“I felt that sharing my knowledge has a great positive impact on these startups and it also inspired me to work better in providing a platform that will guide startups transform their technology ideas into effective emerging companies in the local and regional economy. We are working to launch it in the coming weeks,” she said.
Meanwhile, photographers also met difficult challenges during the pandemic period.
Maher al Hassani said, “The pandemic has forced people to completely change their lifestyle and acclimate to new methods by spending more time at home and learning new skills. Some took online lessons while others have to remotely work. Everyone also has to re-train oneself on personal hygiene .”
“In photography, we used to always go out to take photographs of different locations. Because of the social distancing measures put in place, we were reduced to filming in external locations and have to work on private studios at home. We also transacted most of the things online,” he added.
“The crisis has given me a great opportunity as a photographer to take full advantage of my time to learn new things in the field of photography and design,” he said.