KUWAIT: Minister of State for Youth Affairs Abdulrahman Al-Mutairi speaks during the event. - KUNA

KUWAIT: Minister of State for Youth Affairs Abdulrahman Al-Mutairi praised yesterday the annual 'State award of admiration and encouragement,' saying it was an honorable image of the talented Kuwaiti youths. In a speech he delivered at a ceremony held at Abdulhussain Abdulredha Theater, the Minister said, "we are honoring our culture by awarding these talented Kuwaitis youths." He congratulated the winners of the state awards, wishing them success and further achievements, praising the role of the higher committee of the state award.

The Minister expressed the state desire to make a comprehensive and qualitative development at the National Council for Culture, Arts and Letters (NCCAL).The developing plan includes raising overall quality standards of culture and arts in all fields provided by the NCCAL, the Minister explained. The technical development is also on the agenda to reach higher standers of creativity and excellence.

Secretary General of the NCCAL Kamel Al-Abduljalil said that holding this annual event on its 31st edition despite the COVID-19 pandemic precautions reflects the prestige and high value of this award that aims to provide a creative, productive, civilized, and intellectual society. He stressed the role played by NCCAL in supporting and directing society by building an encouraging environment for more knowledge and learning.

NCCAL aspires to provide promising opportunities and investment to enable young entrepreneurs, who own small businesses to activate and develop artistic and historic facilities that belong to the Council. The encouragement award first edition was held in 1988. Winners are granted a figurine depicting the award and KD 10,000 cash for each. The other category of the award was launched in 2000, granting each winner KD 20,000 cash.

Winners of the awards hailed the country's effort to encourage the creativity of artists and talented people. The annual honoring of talented Kuwaitis encourages them to exert more efforts to develop the cultural field, a number of winners said in separate statements yesterday, on the sidelines of the ceremony. Winner of a musical award Yousef Al-Muhanna noted that the award encourages him to do better work in the future.

Meanwhile, winner of plastic arts award artist Abdulredha Baqer expressed his joy over winning the prize, adding that he had taken part in different exhibitions in Kuwait and abroad. Moreover, Muthafar Rashid won a social studies award, while authors Abdullah Al-Busais and Abdulwahab Al-Hamady won literature awards. Since the honorary award was launched in 1999, 66 Kuwaiti figures have won it, while 201 others have won the state's encouragement award since 1988.