What started on a flight from Zurich to Doha 12 years ago, with Qatar securing the right to host the first FIFA World Cup™ in the Middle East, has become a metaphor for the pride and the mood of the nation. It is a single Qatari flag, with its own unique story.
Stitched by hundreds of people from schools, hospitals, and homes throughout Qatar in the buildup to the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™, this flag is a symbol of solidarity and a call for the nation to come together to celebrate this milestone in its history.
And woven into it is the flag that was swiftly switched together by the Qatari delegation as they flew back to Qatar from Switzerland in 2010 after Qatar was awarded the 2022 edition of the FIFA World Cup™.
Nearing Doha, with crowds waiting to welcome them, the delegation realized they did not have a Qatari flag to display. So they made their own – from a maroon scarf belonging to Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson of Qatar Foundation, as well as a white tablecloth.
Inspired by this story, ahead of the World Cup, Qatar Foundation led a nationwide mission that, over four weeks, saw more than 600 people stitch their own pieces of cloth – all with personal messages – together to make a Qatari flag.
Starting from a tailor at Souq Waqif, the flag has travelled around schools, hospitals, and homes across Qatar, with everyone from athletes to workers to people with disabilities helping to create it.
With the original handmade flag from that day in 2010 at its center, the community-created symbol of Qatar was proudly displayed at the opening ceremony of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™.
The national effort that made it possible represents what the flag of Qatar stands for, and how it unites a nation. And it all began on that day in 2010, in the skies above Qatar.