- Community members and visitors are invited to join Catwalk on 6th November. A fun, free, open-to-all, 7km or 700m walk or run, Catwalk is Catmosphere Foundation’s inaugural campaign.
- AlUla’s 7km Catwalk will take place in the Sharaan Nature Reserve while the 700m Catwalk Cubs will take place in AlUla Oasis
- Catmosphere Foundation was created by the Saudi Ambassador to the United States of America HRH Princess Reema Bandar Al Saud to raise awareness for critically endangered Big Cats, including the Arabian Leopard
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: Visitors, residents and wildlife lovers are invited to join Catwalk, a 7km walk, in AlUla’s protected Sharaan Nature Reserve to show their support for the endangered Arabian Leopard. Residents and visitors can join staff from the Royal Commission for AlUla (RCU) to walk through the stunning Sharaan Nature Reserve, accompanied by rangers.
Parents with young children or families with elderly relatives can take part in Catwalk Cubs, a shorter 700m walk combined with fun activity at the AlUla Oasis, starting at the Orange Road.
A fun, free, open-to-all, 7km or 700m walk or run, Catwalk’s aim is to activate fitness and learning, and in doing so create a community that is not only informed, but also invested, and whose engagement in the support of Big Cat conservation becomes ongoing. Catwalks will take place globally on 6th November 2021.
Catmosphere’s Founder and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador to the United States Reema Bandar Al Saud says: “What’s unique about Catwalk is that we are crafting creative partnerships to align unlikely mandates, and one example of that is how Catwalk is aligning health and well-being to Big Cat conservation.”
Catwalk supports AlUla’s goal to become a global benchmark destination for environmentally-friendly and sustainable tourism. Efforts to protect the Arabian Leopard are central to the success of the RCU’s AlUla project and its far-reaching environmental and sustainability goals.
Dr Ahmed Almalki, Nature Reserve Director, said: “AlUla Catwalk, taking place at the Sharaan Nature Reserve and AlUla Oasis, is a wonderful opportunity for members of the AlUla community and visitors to explore the stunning natural environment and to demonstrate their support for ongoing work to protect the Arabian Leopard, as well as other endangered Big Cats worldwide.
The recent birth of an Arabian Leopard cub at a specialist breeding centre in Taif represents a bright future for the project’s ambitions to conserve the species and successfully reintroduce it to its natural habitat in the mountains of AlUla.
One of the rarest animals on the planet, the Arabian Leopard is officially classified as ‘critically endangered’ – just one step above extinct – with fewer than 200 thought to be living in the wild.
RCU has already committed USD 25 million to the Arabian Leopard Fund, an independent organisation launched by the Commission to work across the leopard’s home range to save the species.
“The Arabian Leopard is a symbol of our long-term goals to revitalise AlUla through conservation projects that emphasise a deep connection, balance and harmony with the natural world. We look forward to welcoming local families, residents of all ages and visitors to explore the beauty of the Sharaan Nature Reserve and AlUla Oasis, to learn more about these unique places and raise awareness about the need to conserve and protect the natural world around us now and for future generations to come,” said Dr Almalki.
It is always AlUla / not Al-Ula
About the Royal Commission for AlUla
The Royal Commission for AlUla (RCU) was established by royal decree in July 2017 to preserve and develop AlUla, a region of outstanding natural and cultural significance in north-west Saudi Arabia. RCU’s long-term plan outlines a responsible, sustainable, and sensitive approach to urban and economic development, that preserves the area’s natural and historic heritage, while establishing AlUla as a desirable location to live, work, and visit. This encompasses a broad range of initiatives across archaeology, tourism, culture, education, and the arts, reflecting a commitment to meeting the economic diversification, local community empowerment, and heritage preservation priorities of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 programme.