Our work

Social investment

Catalysing growth

We invest in the people and organisations working to promote equality and create opportunity

We provide financial support to innovative nonprofit projects and organisations that support skills development, employment and job creation, and which benefit the wider community.

Since 2018, our social investment work has focused on improving income opportunities among vulnerable segments of society, and accelerating the rise of social enterprises. Our goal is to use strategic grantmaking to create large-scale, sustainable impact – across multiple sectors.

What we fund

Equal Opportunity Grant

Our Equal Opportunities Grant supports projects that equip vulnerable groups with the skills and knowledge they need to access employment, boost their earning potential, or expand the economic opportunities available to them. Whether working with low-income families, widows or divorced women, people with additional needs, or those who are unemployed, we invest in nonprofit projects making a measurable, sustainable difference to Saudi society.

Social Entrepreneurship Grant

Social enterprises are businesses motivated by purpose, as well as profit, and with a mission to benefit society. We invest in business incubators and accelerators that work with social startups, and which use training, expertise and mentorship to help early-stage entrepreneurs flourish. Financial support can be spent in multiple ways – based on our, and the organisation’s, mutual interests – with the goal of helping more social enterprises move from ideation to impact, and to sustainability.

Our impact

Hear how our grantees are benefiting their communities

Setting students on the pathway to success

For high school students growing up under the shadow of automation and a rapidly changing labour market, choosing a university specialism can be a difficult and alarming process.

It’s for this reason that the Committee for Social Development, an Arqa-based nonprofit, launched a virtual platform designed to help students make informed decisions about their higher education.

The Discovery Platform empowers young students with online career advice and access to course choices. Students are asked two rounds of questions, which help them to select subjects based on their personal interests, as well as their potential and capabilities. 

“We wanted to address the gap in the provision of relevant information, advice and self-assessment among secondary school graduates,” says Yasser Bakkar, project manager at Discovery Platform.

The portal was built and launched with grant support from King Khalid Foundation, awarded in 2016. Two years from its launch, Discovery Platform has around 200,000 registered users, and receives between 2,500 and 3,000 visits per month – and up to 500 a day in peak season.

“This is a unique project that is helping Saudi youth to make better choices about their future,” says Bakkar, “which ultimately means better choices for our country.”

Empowering women through green business

In already unequal societies, women are often the most vulnerable. Many carry the double burden of poverty, and caregiving, with little access to opportunity to improve their circumstances.

Since 1976, Al Faisaliya Women’s Welfare Society has helped to financially and socially empower more than 2,000 of Jeddah’s low-income widows, divorcees and prisoners’ families. And in 2014, when King Khalid Foundation launched a competition asking Saudi-based charities to design a profit-driven initiative, Al Faisaliya was one of the first to respond.

The organisation’s innovative Ajr wa Nadhafa project proposed offering needy families payment in exchange for collecting recycled plastic and paper. Supported by funding from King Khalid Foundation, Al Faisaliya placed 80 recycling containers in schools, homes and hotels, and hosted workshops that trained women in how to create art or useful accessories from recyclables.

The revenue helped fund Al Faisaliya’s programmes, and at the same time, led to an increase in environmental awareness in the community.

Today, Ajr wa Nadhafa is a self-sustaining project, and Al Faisaliya plans to roll it out across Jeddah in support of more low-income families.

“King Khalid Foundation is our partner in sustainable social development,” says Kholoud Al Quthami, PR manager at the nonprofit. “We’re proud to have collaborated with them, and seen the impact we have.”

Skilling Medina’s women out of the margins

When vulnerable women in Medina need help, they turn to Taiba Women’s Association for Social Development. Since 1979, the organisation has been providing financial support and skills training to help get women who are divorced, or who have suffered domestic abuse, back on their feet.

The nonprofit’s impactful work earned them a grant from King Khalid Foundation in 2015, which helped Taiba to increase the number of women it was helping with medical care, psychological support, legal advice and vocational training from 60 to 110.

Today, 20 of them have found jobs, while six of them have started their own businesses, selling spices, soap and accessories.

“The support the project received from King Khalid Foundation was wonderful,” says Bosaina Ali, financial and social support manager at Taiba.

“Thanks to the initial grant and their ongoing support, we’re able to continue running this project ourselves, and to help more women become active participants in society.”