RIYADH: Saudi innovators are among a group of 8 finalists of the Purina BetterwithPets 2020 Prize, which aims at fostering a positive impact through creative solutions for individuals and communities.
In its second edition, more than 150 applicants from across Europe, the Middle East and North Africa participated, with the 8 finalists announced on May 14. Among them were Saudi Arabia’s PET ME, an application designed and launched by a group of six students and graduates that aims to serve pet lovers and help animals find safe homes in the Kingdom.
The group of six students and graduates from the College of Business Administration at Prince Mohammad Bin Fahd University includes Maram Al-Ghamdi, Reem Al-Subait, Jawaher Al-Khalifah, Joud Al-Otaibi, Ebtihal Al-Barjas and Manal Al-Shehri.
Al-Ghamdi pointed out that PET ME was created to fill the gap of pet adoption issues in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
We were very saddened to see how adopted pets were treated in certain homes because there were no rules and regulations applied during the adoption process and beyond.
“We wanted to spread awareness about pets’ rights through a user-friendly mobile application that we hope will change society’s perception about adoption, and we are looking forward to impacting lives positively.
“We then scheduled a meeting with the Prince Turki bin Mohammed bin Fahd Center for Creativity and Entrepreneurship, and that’s when the PET ME journey began,” said Al-Ghamdi.
“We were very saddened to see how adopted pets were treated in certain homes because there were no rules and regulations applied during the adoption process and beyond. PET ME was the perfect solution for raising community awareness and making adoption procedures easier, while at the same time ensuring that pets are being raised in a safe and happy environment.”
With time, effort and a mission to raise awareness on the importance of adoption, the group decided that the app should cover all these areas.
“So many individuals across the Kingdom value pets and would like to own one, however, the buy-culture seems to be the dominant approach mainly due to the lack of trusted entities. PET ME is a user-friendly application that will offer the simplest experience and sets out to change perceptions.”
Al-Ghamdi said that through the PET ME app, their aim was to support pet lovers and offer them the simplest and safest experience when adopting, “The Saudi community is well-educated and very tech-savvy, hence we truly believe that the app would be a good solution for easy and safe adoption.” She said that being among the finalists for the 2020 Purina
BetterwithPets Prize and representing their country was a great achievement. “We can’t wait to continue this inspiring journey.”
The finalists will showcase their initiatives to a jury of five judges during online pitches that will be broadcast live on June 3.
Piloted and implemented innovation prizewinners will be announced by Bernard Meunier, CEO of Nestle Purina PetCare Europe, Middle East, and North Africa. The finalists that win first prize will receive up to $100,000.