Al-Jawharah Fallatah — Saudi lawyer by day, basketball coach by night

Al-Jawharah Fallatah believes that every passion there must be sacrifice. (Supplied)
Updated 22 February 2019

Al-Jawharah Fallatah — Saudi lawyer by day, basketball coach by night

  • Sport has always been part of my daily routine since college, says Fallatah

RIYADH: Al-Jawharah Fallatah has been practicing law since 2013, but it was not always certain this would be her path. When she originally began her studies, it was with the aim of becoming a dentist.

“Despite my beginnings in health, I was meant to be in the legal field,” she said. “Every field has its own difficulties. I don’t believe anything is difficult if you set your mind to it. Luckily, we are working in a phase where everything is accessible — women are taking leading roles now.”

But though she is driven by her career, she doesn’t spend all her time in an airless office, her nose buried in books. In her spare time, she’s an avid basketball player.

Al-Jawharah is one of many Saudis who pursue their passions as well as full-time jobs. To many, they are a vital release to stimulate the busy lives they lead. 

Her days are long and full, but Al-Jawharah perseveres. “For every passion there must be sacrifice. One can always manage if the mind is set.” 

The first official team she joined was at Prince Sultan University, through which she learned many lessons on teamwork which helped in her academic life. “I learned how to work with a team, and to teach them the importance of teamwork.

“Sport has always been part of my daily routine since college. We created a team and began competing with others from different colleges and schools around Riyadh.”

She remembers her first basketball match fondly: “Our first was an intense game but we won with a good score.” 

Afterwards, Al-Jawharah became part of a group that founded a basketball academy in Riyadh in 2013, at which she was fortunate enough to coach. 

“The academy was a cooperation with another local sports company, but in 2016 there was a split and it was established as a standalone entity. Annually we register over 200 players across all age groups.”


Worshippers flock to reopened Prophet’s Mosque for Friday prayers

Updated 06 June 2020

Worshippers flock to reopened Prophet’s Mosque for Friday prayers

MADINAH: Hundreds of thousands of worshippers attended the first Friday prayers to be held at the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah since the gatherings were suspended to stop the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak.

The green light for the resumption of the prayer meetings came as part of a plan to gradually reopen the Kingdom’s mosques while ensuring worshippers and visitors adhered to preventive measures.

A ban on access to the Rawdah remained in place and only groups of worshippers numbering up to a maximum of 40 percent of the mosque’s capacity were being allowed entry.

Precautionary measures also included the allocation of specific doors for the entry of worshippers, the installation of thermal cameras, removal of all carpets so that prayers could be performed on the marble, sanitization of the mosque’s floors and courtyards, periodic opening of domes and canopies to ventilate the mosque, and the removal of Zamzam water containers.

The Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah will be closed after evening prayers and reopened one hour before dawn prayers. Parking lots will operate at 50 percent capacity and a media awareness campaign has been launched to highlight safety procedures at the holy site.

Medical teams have also been stationed at the main entrances to the mosque in cooperation with the Ministry of Health.

Elsewhere in the Kingdom, worshippers also flocked to perform Friday prayers at mosques amid strict health measures.

On May 31, Saudi authorities reopened all mosques for prayers, except in Makkah, as part of the Kingdom’s plan for a gradual return to normal life.

Last week the minister of Islamic affairs, dawah and guidance said that the country’s mosques were ready to welcome back worshippers, following his field trips to check that necessary preparations had been made.

All worshippers must still maintain a distance of 2 meters between rows, wear masks to enter a mosque, and Friday sermons and prayers have been limited to a maximum of 15 minutes.