Hajj volunteers pilgrims saudi
Volunteers welcome and assist pilgrims for the Hajj. Image Credit: SPA

Cairo: The annual Hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia is traditionally a season for volunteers to give a helping hand in offering services to pilgrims converging on the kingdom from across the globe to perform the obligatory Islamic duty.

This year’s Hajj season is no exception.

As increasing numbers of pilgrims are gathering in Saudi Arabia for next month’s Hajj, the Saudi Ministry of Islamic Affairs, represented by its branch in the holy city of Mecca, has offered 247 chances for would-be volunteers with the onset of the pilgrimage season.

As many as 4,930 male and female volunteers are set to get the chance to pool their efforts in assisting pilgrims during this year’s Hajj season.

Services include the distribution of water bottles, umbrellas protecting from the sun, guiding booklets, and meals to the faithful.

The initiative aims to promote the culture of volunteerism as part of consolidated community partnership in the kingdom.

Saudi government and private sector agencies are joining hands for implementing plans to ensure that the faithful will perform the Hajj rites with ease and comfort in and around Mecca.

Agencies anticipate record numbers of pilgrims this year after around 30 million Muslims from inside and outside the kingdom undertook Umrah or minor pilgrimage at the Grand Mosque in Mecca during the past Islamic sacred month of Ramadan.

More than 2 million Muslims from all over the world are estimated to attend the upcoming pilgrimage expected to begin on June 14.

More than 500,000 overseas pilgrims have already arrived in Saudi Arabia, according to official figures.