GEMS Launches The Alternative Alphabet in Arabic

22 December 2023

GEMS has launched the Arabic version of the award-winning The Alternative Alphabet. The free educational card game focuses on mental health and wellbeing, and aims to empower young generations with the Arabic vocabulary around mental health and improve their expression, understanding, perception, and awareness of mental health issues.

  • Tool builds young people’s understanding of the language around mental health
  • Arabic version launched on 18 December to coincide with Arabic Language Day
  • Follows successful rollout of The Alternative Alphabet in English earlier this year

Alternative Alphabet in Arabic

“This innovative educational tool is designed to foster mental health literacy among the younger generation, empowering them with a comprehensive understanding of Arabic vocabulary associated with mental health. Building upon the success of The Alternative Alphabet in English, this initiative underscores our commitment to equipping students with the necessary tools to navigate and address mental health challenges effectively and support themselves and others in their journey towards improved wellbeing.”

Ranju Anand - Senior Vice President – Education, GEMS Education

The Arabic Alternative Alphabet is an original card game with 28 characters, one for each letter of the Arabic alphabet. Each character represents a different facet of mental wellbeing, from kindness and tolerance to self-compassion and insecurity. 

The Arabic language launch follows the successful rollout of The Alternative Alphabet in English earlier this year – an initiative by GEMS Education and Thrive Wellbeing Centre that was named ‘Best Campaign in the UAE’, among a string of other awards, at the MEPRA Awards 2023.

The Alternative Alphabet is backed by a GEMS Education survey of 4,500 UAE-based students aged 11-18 years that shows 42% often feel anxious or stressed, with 73% saying more needs to be done to support them in this important area. The survey also indicates that, while today’s young people show an increased awareness of mental health issues, seven in 10 won’t speak to friends or classmates about their mental health challenges.

The Alternative Alphabet Card Game is freely available to download in Arabic and English for schools, teachers, students, parents, and anyone interested.

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