Thursday, September 20, 2007

Dubai cares - let's all care!

Dubai cares!
His Highness Shaikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum has launched a charity initiative to educate more than a million children worldwide, reported Gulf News. 'Dubai Cares' will run throughout Ramadan, with the goal of raising money from across Dubai's diverse community to provide primary education for poor children across the world.
http://www.ameinfo.com/132581.html
Education key to break 'cycle of poverty'
http://archive.gulfnews.com/indepth/dubaicares/sub_story/10154927.html

09/20/2007 12:44 PM By Emmanuelle Landais, Zoi Constantine and Abbas Al Lawati, Staff Reporters
Dubai: Over a million children will benefit from the 'Dubai Cares' campaign, launched by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, which aims to break "the cycle of poverty" and empower children with education for a better future.

The 'Dubai Cares' campaign aims to raise at least Dh200 million from across Dubai's diverse community to provide children in some of the world's poorest countries with primary education.
It sets out to build new school facilities; renovate and rehabilitate existing, abandoned or damaged school premises; distribute school materials; award scholarships; coordinate a food programme at schools; an annual medical check-up for pupils and teachers; and provide training and workshops for teachers.

The campaign is being spearheaded by Shaikh Mohammad and his children, who will unveil a number of initiatives over the next six weeks.
According to organisers, in addition to raising money for the less fortunate around the world, 'Dubai Cares' also seeks to get Dubai's community, including individuals and the private sector, involved in the project, instilling a sense of social cohesion.

"I expect both Emiratis and expatriates to compete in charity and to participate in any way you find suitable .... In our country, we added to our Arab and Islamic tradition a diversity of values represented by the diverse mixture we have here of companies, cultures and nationalities from all over the world," Shaikh Mohammad said in his speech.

Launched in Madinat Jumeirah, 'Dubai Cares' is a charity drive during Ramadan to raise funds for primary education, effectively laying the basis for sustained economic growth, sound governance and effective institutions.

Soon after the announcement of the campaign, Shaikh Ahmad Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of Dubai Civil Aviation and Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Emirates Airlines and Group, announced the donation of Dh10 million.

Major General Musabeh Rashid Musabeh Al Fattan, Director of Diwan of His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and his family also announced a donation of Dh10 million per year to 'Dubai Cares', pledging to build seven schools throughout the world every year.
Sultan Ahmad Bin Sulayem, Chairman of Dubai World, pledged Dh20 million every year.
Shaikh Hasher Al Maktoum, Director of Dubai Information Department, pledged Dh10 million.

Expatriate community leaders said they have full confidence their respective nationals residing in the UAE will make the maximum effort to support the campaign.

Role of community
French Consul General, Robert Jongeryck, said the campaign could not have been launched at a better time as Ramadan is the perfect backdrop for such a charitable initiative. "I'm confident French businesses and individuals as well as other nationalities will do their utmost to support the campaign," said Jongeryck.

Venu Rajamony, Consul General of India, echoed similar views. "I'm sure the Indian community will be happy to support all good initiatives of His Highness Shaikh Mohammad. We look forward to hearing about the details of the campaign," he said.

http://www.gulfnews.com/

Full text of speech
http://archive.gulfnews.com/indepth/dubaicares/puffs/mid_right/10154747.html
09/20/2007 12:42 PM Staff Report

Below is the full text of Shaikh Mohammad's speech at the launch of a multi-million dirham initiative to educate more than 1 million children worldwide.

Ladies and Gentlemen

First, let me congratulate you on the occasion of the Holy Month of Ramadan. I pray that God will give each of us the strength to fulfill our duties during the Holy Month, the desire to absorb its values to the core of our being, and the integrity to ensure these values are reflected in our deeds. Ramadan is a blessed month for Moslems around the world. Our hearts fill with shared joy in our religion, our souls are lifted and we are swayed by the spirit of the Holy Month to offer mercy and compassion. Let the enduring spirit of Sadaqah (Charity) be the guiding light for our actions throughout the Holy Month. Let it shape our good intentions so they become deeds whose consequences are positive, immense and far reaching.

Education offers one of the clearest and most effective ways to turn good intentions into actions that change the lives of people immeasurably and for the better. The satisfaction to be gained from a single act that helps the needy or curbs injustice can be immense. Imagine how much stronger that satisfaction must be if that act helps – as only education can – to free generation after generation from grinding poverty. The patrons of education leave a lasting mark on history.

The opening of the first school in the UAE in 1903, for example, is a defining moment in the history of the nation and continues to be regarded as one of the greatest events in the country's modern history. Our history books record the contributions of UAE's education pioneers such as: Mohammed bin Ahmad Dalmouk, Khalaf bin Oteiba, Ali Mahmoud, Mohammed Zeinal and a host of others. The names of those pioneers who put their efforts into opening schools and providing the funding to support education, will be longest remembered and are an undeniable part of our history. Those who forget their responsibilities towards their community are soon forgotten.

Brothers and Sisters, Education holds out hope for the future, enrichment for the present, and dignity for mankind. It helps us to communicate with each other. It helps nations to hurdle the barriers to understanding. It provides a solid basis from which societies can grow and flourish. God Almighty said: "O mankind! We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most honourable of you with Allâh is that (believer) who has At-Taqwa". (Al Hujurat – 13) But, could the ignorant communicate with the educated? Do societies that continue to accept widespread illiteracy have any chance to bridge the gap between themselves and the educated world?

Education, through its ability to open eyes to new possibilities and extend horizons, offers a channel for communication between humans, a necessity as the Holy Quran tells us. The importance of education has increased tremendously in the "Knowledge Age". Promoting education and providing the support it needs to flourish are now prerequisites for global development. Those who are deprived of education will inevitably fall behind and dwell in a shadowland. They will never know the true essence of their religion, nor learn its valuable teachings. They will always be dependent on others and face the prospect of becoming burdens on themselves, their societies and the whole world.

Brothers and Sisters. Since the era of the late Sheikh Zayed and Sheikh Rashid, may God ensure their souls rest in peace, the UAE has been committed to offering support and help to our fraternal brothers and sisters in the Arab and Moslem worlds across Africa and Asia. The country's contributions were made in many fields, and especially in the field of education. From early on in our history pioneering UAE businessmen have appreciated the importance of education. Mr. Juma Al Majid, for example, has been an outstanding role model. His support for education has resulted in Mr. Juma being considered an outstanding figure and a celebrated patron across the Arab and Islamic Worlds. The UAE's remarkable successes at various local and regional levels have increased its prominence as an economic and cultural bridge between the East and the West.

By accepting this crucial role we accept at the same time the duty to promote education in its entirety. Last May, I launched the "Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Foundation" for human development. Knowledge and Education are key components of the vision and mission of the foundation and underpin its activities. We expect the Foundation to become a showcase for the benefits of long term education initiatives for humanity in general and for our region in particular.

Today, I seize this opportunity presented by the Holy Month of Ramadan to announce the "Dubai Cares" campaign, which focuses on supporting education for children in a number of the world's poorest countries. I invite you to take part and support this campaign. I strongly believe that together, we can reshape the future of underdeveloped countries in the region and globally.

The campaign's mission is to help spread education in these countries by securing necessary funds. Building new schools and classrooms, providing books, food and medical care for unprivileged children are among the campaign's key objectives. Brother and sisters. Eight years ago, the international community set the millennium development goals all countries pledged to fulfill. One of the main goals was to guarantee that every child will receive a basic education by the end of 2015.

The realities on the ground are not promising and it looks unlikely that this goal will be met on time. There are 120 million school-age children across the world who do not have access to education. A third of the children in developing countries cannot complete five years of education, the minimum required to achieve basic literacy.

Unfortunately, the biggest proportion of these deprived children are in Asia and Africa, especially in the Islamic world and the neighboring countries. This is in spite of the value placed on education in our holy book, as the first Aya that was sent to the world was a call for reading: IQRA’A. Even the holy sayings of our prophet place education on the same level as worship, and even at a better place.

Brothers and Sisters. Thanks to Allah, we, in the UAE, enjoy a high standard of living. One of the secrets of our success and progress has been our ability and readiness to create opportunities and seize them in a timely fashion. But opportunities do not grow on trees and cannot be achieved by wishing or dreaming. They are attained by taking the one clear path - the path of knowledge. Education is the bulldozer that makes this path navigable, guiding people along its course and towards their destination.

Knowledge gives people the chance to live in pride, progress and prosperity. Expanding education in all of our emirates, and encouraging thousands upon thousands of university and higher colleges graduates, from our boys and girls, is the solid platform on which we will achieve progress and prosperity. Advancing education remains an unquestionable priority. We have started the race against time to achieve an Emirati education that meets the highest international standards.

This Dubai Cares campaign, that I am launching today, seeks to shine the light of knowledge and dispel the darkness of ignorance. Its aim is to give the children of poor countries hope for the future and opportunities to break the cycle of poverty that threatens to entrap them and consign their families to a life with no real future. Through education they can become positive contributors in the prosperity of their communities and countries.

Brother and sisters. Wherever ignorance reigns so does poverty, illness, misery and despair, and people start believing in fiction and illusions. The worst disease in this world is the unbreakable partnership between ignorance and poverty. This partnership is the source of all evil from which many countries suffer and it is the root of persecution, and the main reason for divisions in the world between a wealthy North and a poor South, between advanced countries and deprived countries, between societies that know, and societies that do not know. The only way to break this partnership between ignorance and poverty is by relentlessly attacking ignorance and by exerting every effort to spread education.

We are doing our duty, regardless of the fact that many countries have resigned from playing their role in combating illiteracy worldwide and the international community is not able to fulfill its promises. We are doing what we see as our duty by our religion, our traditions, our humanity and our deep belief that the person who turns his back on the suffering of his brothers and sisters doesn’t deserve to be called as human. Therefore I am confident that you will participate in Dubai Care initiative for education.

I expect you, Emiratis and expatriates, to compete in charity and to participate in every way you find suitable. And I expect from the private sector a substantial contribution, including the international corporations and their offices in the UAE. In our country, we added to our Arab and Islamic values a bright international horizon with a diverse mixture of companies, cultures and nationalities from all over the world. This mixture offers a successful model of coexistence and collaboration. We are all invited today to develop this model and give it a humanitarian dimension through our collaborative donation to our brothers and sisters who are less fortunate than our Emirati nationals and the expat residents who have helped our country and helped themselves to achieve what they could not in their home countries.

Today, I announce the start of Dubai Cares campaign, empowered by your will and determination. I am pleased to announce that I, together with my sons and daughters, will participate actively to ensure the success of this campaign. I expect everyone to participate personally and that you will motivate your family members to contribute as well, so we can all fulfill our duty in what pleases our Creator and our own conscience. We need to implant the culture of donation in our society and give our children a heritage that incorporates the noble values that we inherited from our ancestors and which have now become one of the highest universal values. These values gain more territory every day. They have new heroes every day, competing for the welfare of their brothers and sisters in humanity.

http://archive.gulfnews.com/articles/print_friendly_version.jsp?


Dubai Cares’ for children in poor countries
By Meraj Rizvi (UAE Editor)20 September 2007

DUBAI — His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, yesterday launched the ‘Dubai Cares’ campaign, a new charity initiative during the holy month of Ramadan to help educate one million children in poor countries around the world.

The fund, to be raised in a six-week long drive, will go to countries which lack resources for education and face major impediments to growth and stability.

Addressing a large gathering of VIPs, local dignitaries and representatives from the private and public sectors as well as charity organisations at the Madinat Jumeirah, Shaikh Mohammed said:
“The campaign will assist countries in achieving their UN Millennium Development Goals set eight years ago for providing primary education to every child by 2015.

“The millennium development goals, which the countries pledged to fulfil, emphasised on education as the best long-term solution to alleviate poverty in the developing world,” he said, reinforcing the call of experts that educating children, especially girls, is the key to ending the global cycle of poverty.

Global statistics significantly add to the urgency of this campaign, Shaikh Mohammed said, adding that 120 million school-age children around the globe are not enrolled in primary schools, and one in every three children in developing countries does not complete five years of primary education, the minimum required for achieving basic literacy.

Of the children who do not attend schools, 58 per cent (more than half) are girls, and it is this gender gap in education which poses a major obstacle to alleviating poverty.

Shaikh Mohammed stressed on the need for urgent action to meet the UN development goal, urging both Emiratis and expatriates in the UAE to compete in charity and to participate in their own suitable way in the charity campaign. He urged the private sector, including the international corporations and their offices in the UAE, to make a substantial contribution to the charity drive. Shaikh Mohammed and his sons and daughters, all of whom are making personal commitments to the cause, are offering their direct support — both financial and moral — in order to achieve the campaign’s objectives. These efforts run parallel to the call of Shaikh Mohammed to Dubai’s multicultural residents to contribute to and participate in this global initiative. “Joined by my sons and daughters, I will participate actively to ensure the success of this campaign and invite everyone to participate personally and motivate your family members to contribute as well, so we can all fulfil our duty in what pleases our Creator and our own conscience,” said Shaikh Mohammed.

“We need to implant the culture of giving in our society and give our children a heritage that incorporates the noble values we inherited from our ancestors which have now become one of the highest universal values,” he noted. Among the campaign’s goals is social cohesion, which is in line with Shaikh Mohammed’s commitment to enhance a collective sense of belonging among all communities in Dubai.

Another important goal is to instill the spirit of proactive fund-raising for a global cause, which stems from Shaikh Mohammed’s focus on global citizenship and broadening the scope of Dubai’s philanthropic obligations to a global level.

‘Dubai Cares’ joins a list of international initiatives launched in Dubai that express Dubai’s will to play an effective role contributing to achieving a better tomorrow for future generations.

Events and promotions will be organised over a six-week period to tap into the spirit of giving and the tradition of philanthropy deeply rooted in the Emirati community — elements that will be key to achieving the campaign’s objectives.

The campaign will also create the necessary conditions for students to excel and take their rightful positions as positive contributors to their societies.

Specifically, the campaign sets out to build new school facilities; renovate/rehabilitate existing abandoned and/or damaged school premises; distribute school supply materials; award student scholarships; coordinate a feeding programme at schools; an annual medical check-up for students and teachers; and provide training and workshops to benefit teachers.

By promoting education in other countries, Shaikh Mohammed said, he aims to reinforce the principle that education — as a vehicle for development in countries globally — guarantees stability, prosperity and progress and brings about positive change throughout the world.

'Dubai Cares' Secures First Donation at Launch


19 September 2007Major General Musabeh Rashid Musabeh Al Fattan Announces AED 10 million per year to Fund Education in Poor Countries
Dubai - Major General Musabeh Rashid Musabeh Al Fattan, Director of Diwan of His Highness

Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and his family today announced a donation of AED 10 million per year to 'Dubai Cares', following the launch of the campaign by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

Launched at the Madinat Arena in Madinat Jumeirah, 'Dubai Cares' is a charity drive during the Holy Month of Ramadan to raise funds for primary education for needy children in poor countries around the world, effectively laying the basis for sustained economic growth, sound governance and effective institutions.

The donation will help lay the foundations in poor countries for students - and their communities - to escape the reins of poverty. 'Dubai Cares' sets out to build new school facilities; renovate/rehabilitate existing abandoned and/or damaged school premises; distribute school supply materials; award student scholarships; coordinate a feeding programme at schools; an annual medical check-up for students and teachers; and provide training and workshops to benefit teachers.

With every school - including student fees, teachers and equipment - valued at AED 1.4 million, Maj. Gen. Al Fattan and his family are helping 'Dubai Cares' build 7 schools throughout the world every year. Villages, towns and remote areas struggling to provide children basic education, will soon have the resources to give children the means and opportunity to be positive contributors to their societies.

'Dubai Cares' joins a list of international initiatives launched in Dubai that express Dubai's will to play an effective role contributing to achieving the world's mission to secure a better tomorrow for future generations - a huge responsibility given Dubai has chosen to assume yet another initiative with the welfare of the person as its focal point.

http://www.zawya.com/Story.cfm/sidZAWYA20070919113413

Shaikh Mohammad: Dubai Cares
XPRESS
http://www.xpress4me.com/news/uae/dubai/20003212.html

The “Dubai Cares” campaign, a charity drive to educate children in poor countries, was launched yesterday.

The campaign recognizes education as the best long-term solution to alleviate poverty in the developing world, reinforcing the call of experts that educating children is the key to ending the global cycle of poverty.

Global statistics add to the urgency of this campaign: 120 million school-age children are not enrolled in primary education; one in every three children in developing countries does not complete the minimum requirements for basic literacy.

Of the children who do not attend school, 58% are girls. This gender gap in education is a major obstacle to alleviating poverty.

His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, was on hand to launch the campaign. In his speech he said: “Education is the most effective way to turn good intentions into concrete actions that change the lives of people immeasurably and for the better. The satisfaction of helping the needy or curbing injustice can be immense.”

Shaikh Mohammad described how the campaign will help over 1 million children and assist countries in achieving their UN Millennium Development Goals for providing Primary Education to every child by 2015.

The recipient countries will include those who lack resources for education, growth and stability.
The campaign sets out to build new/renovate schools; distribute school supplies; award scholarships; coordinate a feeding programme; setup annual medical check-ups for students and teachers; and provide training and workshops for teachers.
http://www.xpress4me.com/news/uae/dubai/20003212.html