Farah Shaaban … a woman, a mother and (Omneya) friend!
Farah Shanan &The legacy of pride
Farah Shaaban is a Kuwaiti woman that always believed since childhood that she would live up to her name (means “Joy” In Arabic). She had a great childhood and the little girl inside her still enjoys life with all of its joy and challenges especially when her favorite time is with kids.
She received her education in public schools and graduated from the (Department of communication-Kuwait University) then worked in the (Kuwait Central Bank) then joined the private sector in investment field then petroleum sector. She experienced a lot being a mother, and an ambitious, visionary businesswoman. She began working in making her dream come true in January 2014 as she was full-time focused in bringing (Omnyea) into life.
- What were you dreams and ambitions that you were looking forward to achieve in your career start? Have you made some of them come true?
When I started off my career, I thought that being in a job would be my ambition and my dream we with an outstanding leadership mindset, but after 15 years of experience I figured out that my dream was to be an entreprenelle and make my own successful story.
- Who was your first inspirer in life?
It was my father (my Allah rest his soul), unfortunately I didn’t realize that until he passed away in 2012, he was a self-made loving man, her taught me how to get anything I want without relying on anybody.
- What is your biggest passion in life?
I’m very passionate about Kuwait, it may be the reason that I’m doing something deplored from people’s point of view but Kuwait is always before my eyes and mind wherever I head to and my passion towards it beyond anything else.
- Did it cross your mind that you’d become so active in the industrial filed?
Never! In the matter of fact, it was purely coincidental as my current partners (Saud Al-Fawzan & Sanaa Al-Qamlas) are my friends. One day, Sanaa, my closest friend to my heart and to my family & kids, told me her idea of how bad she want to make plastic recycling factory judging her wide experience in that field, I instantly replied (let’s go for it!) and then we started off doing it.
- Tell us more about you being a mother?
I became a mother at my early ages, I gave birth to my first daughter (Aya) when I was 19, she’s the one who taught me how to become a mother, I give her credits for teaching me how to set early and deep focused goals in my life especially when I was still in collage yet a mother for the prettiest girl one could ever have. She was the reason for me to take interest in reading more books as she set me on fire to accept more and more challenges in my life and surpass them all with everlasting power and love.
- Tell us more about (Aya) the little girl and the young women?
Aya’s childhood was simple, quite, and very special. I remember the smallest details about it. I used to have a lot of joy just by watching her closely and communicating with her more and more. I will never forget how I learned swimming with her when she was 2 years old.
She was always passionate and ahead of her age, she loved Indian songs, acting, and was addicted to watching TV. After secondary school, I strangely noticed myself in her, how she acted, how she made her decisions, her personality, being so stubborn and challenging, how she took big responsibilities without whining, and how she was great in managing and containing others, (Aya) doesn’t like to take what is normal and boring, she is far away from being a shallow person.
- How did you raise (Aya) & (Anas)? What type of mothers are you towards them?
I guess i can describe myself as their best friend and the first person they head to go through any challenges or to handle any issues they face; you can say that I’d be their first resort. I like the idea that we are a trio that completes itself and I raised them to always stick together.
“I’m not just a friend with my children; I’m a friend of their friends too! I deal with them as an independent individuals with freedom of choice for what they want; I rarely advise or direct them about what they want. However, I am certain that they will learn from their experiments in life and that enough will encourage them to take responsibility towards a lot at an early age.
- Tell us more about (Omneya) from idea to reality?
Omneya happens to be the most beautiful thing in my career, it got so deep and detailed in my life, I really enjoyed working for it, it felt to me as if I was raising a daughter of mine that can make my country and my children proud forever. I started my project as a
volunteer to enlighten others about recycling culture and to recreate new industry in our country and set forth means of development in our community to make a brand new Kuwait!
Today, my dream came true, and we launched (Omneya) factory in constitution day November 11, 2017. It is more than just a recycling factory, it’s a long lasting legacy that will always be remembered by how it was launched and how it faced challenges and stood still in achieving its goals at all aspects.
“I think I never recognize fear nor think about it. I do not hesitate from doing what is new, different and unfamiliar, I’m also not afraid if I failed at something neither felt down about it. I just get myself up again and return much stronger than before. It’s us who pursue our own success and make our dreams come true.”
- What was behind launching (Omneya) at the first place? And why recycling in particular?
(Sanna)’s experience was very wide in that filed, and I have great trust in her as we collaborated in many pervious projects. We chose to draw more attention upon plastic recycling as it is much neglected in Kuwait and we were certain about investing in such overlooked fortune, not to mention its environmental based effect.
- How did your children react upon such project, did they support you from day one?
In an instant! They were very supportive and encouraging. (Aya & Anas) distributed (Omneya)’s special boxes with me, and spread the word wherever they went, they are my 1st volunteers in that project and have always been participating in all of our events and activities under (Omneya)’s name.
In the matter of fact, when (Anas) wanted to humor me, he would call me (Omneya)! They were very proud of me, my work, and my achievements. With that, I became more and more strong.
- Your hands seems to be always full, how do you find time for you children?
I feel quite unfair toward them; I have apologized several times in public for not being there for them in several occasion. I also made my HQ near my home and the factory but I cannot help it that working hours may reach 15 hours a day! Which consumes most of my quality time with them. However, I am certain they fully understand the importance of what I do and willing to put some effort and sacrifice in order for (Omneya) to surpass all around Kuwait.
- Is there a certain activity you enjoy doing together?
Summer beach is what brings us all together as we didn’t get the chance to travel since 2014. Our key activity is to communicate together and it became easier to meet every day as I work from home.
- (Aya) let me ask you, what were the key lessons you learned from you mother?
I learned a lot from her, she never backs down nor forfeits from anything she wants to achieve. My mom doesn’t know the word (Difficult), she believes that we all have the ability to realize whatever we want if you put serious time and effort into it, and that will make us reach our goals.
- What about you (Anas), do you feel proud about your mother’s accomplishments?
Very proud! I mention what she did to everybody.
- (Farah), what kind of legacy you want to leave behind to your children?
I think it would be how much I love my country, and I wish that their idiom in life would be unconditional giving without holding for any return.
- (Aya), how can you describe a successful and empowered woman?
She is a woman with a clear vision, know what she wants to achieve and goes for it with all of her effort and power against all challenges and setbacks.
She is that unbreakable woman!
- (Aya), you are the 1st volunteer in project (Omneya), what made you feel that you want to give it a try and join in?
Supporting my mother came first; sharing her dream and becoming a part in making it come true. (Omneya) was her most important dream and I had to be part of realizing it.
“To cut a story short, my mother represent the meaning of heroism in my life”
- (Farah), what do (Anas & Aya) represent to you?
They are my investment in life, and my legacy after I leave this world.
- Any last ideas you want to share with us?
Kuwait, Kuwait, Kuwait.
Whoever is reading these lines always put this country before your eyes
It has been and always will be blessed by Allah thanks the kindness and pure hearts of its people.