The day is taking place this year during a critical time when everyone needs to follow the humanitarian legacy of Sheikh Zayed to achieve greater cooperation and solidarity in facing the challenges caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
The UAE’s international efforts to face the pandemic, through sending medical and relief aid to many countries, confirm its commitment to the humanitarian vision of Sheikh Zayed, which has strengthened its stature as a humanitarian capital.
History has marked the success of Sheikh Zayed in transforming humanitarian work in the UAE into a way of life and behaviour.
The value of aid provided by the UAE, upon the directives of Sheikh Zayed, in the form of grants, loans and physical aid to many countries around the world amounted to over AED98 billion in 2000.
Sheikh Zayed received medals from various countries, in recognition of his services to humanity.
He was also keen to draft legal and organisational frameworks that transformed charity work into a comprehensive system adopted by the government and private organisations.
H.H. Sheikh Khalid bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Board of Zayed Higher Organisation for People of Determination, ZHO, has said that the UAE’s Founding Father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, is an icon of humanitarian action in both regional and international spheres.
In a statement marking Zayed Humanitarian Day, Sheikh Khalid bin Zayed noted that as “time passes, Sheikh Zayed remains in the hearts and minds of individuals” for his varied global humanitarian efforts.
Celebrated annually on 19th Ramadan, Zayed Humanitarian Day honours the legacy, values and principles of the late Sheikh Zayed, with the date enhancing the spirit of philanthropy across the UAE during the Holy Month of Ramadan.
On this day, Sheikh Khalid noted, we affirm the legacy of sustainable development and humanitarian action as a core pillar in Emirati society and culture.
The Founding Father was a model of selflessness and dedication to the building of a nation, His Highness continued. He added that Zayed Humanitarian Day provides a moment of reflection by the UAE’s citizens and residents on the values and principles that the late ruler lived by, and his leadership qualities and accomplishments across local, regional and international spheres.
“We always feel confident, hopeful and optimistic about the homeland’s future, whose leadership is inspired by Sheikh Zayed and continues on his path under the wise leadership of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, ” Sheikh Khalid added.
Sheikh Zayed’s school of thought on humanitarian action is an inspiration for the whole world, he noted, adding that the later ruler is a symbol and icon of humanitarian work. The Founding Father’s numerous philanthropic and development initiatives served humanity as a whole, regardless of race, colour, national origin, religion, or gender, the ZHO Chairman emphasised. “It is upon these values and principles, that a heightened sense of responsibility and humanitarian care was embedded within UAE foreign policy, cementing the nation’s global image as one of humanitarian giving.”
“We, the people of the United Arab Emirates, will remain proud to be part of this noble land, the nation of Sheikh Zayed,” His Highness affirmed.
He went on to note that the country continues to be one of the largest donors of humanitarian and development aid globally.
In his statement, Sheikh Khalid highlighted the UAE’s global humanitarian efforts to combat the coronavirus pandemic. “We are now witnessing the UAE leadership’s efforts to accelerate the provision of aid to all countries of the world in a bid to assist them in combatting COVID-19.”
Latest figures from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation show that the UAE has provided over 486 tonnes of aid to over 45 countries, supporting nearly 486,000 medical professionals in countries ranging from Sudan to Somalia and from Iran to Colombia and the US. Moreover, Dubai’s International Humanitarian City has facilitated the distribution of around 85 percent of the WHO’s personal protective equipment, PPE, shipments worldwide.
DP World, UAE Region recognises Zayed Humanitarian Work Day.
As a leading enabler of global trade, DP World, UAE Region’s humanitarian initiatives represent a key pillar of its overall strategy, which emphasizes promoting the spirit of giving and benevolence in its organisational culture.
Mohammed Al Muallem, CEO and Managing Director, DP World, UAE Region and CEO of Jafza, said: “In DP World, UAE Region, we don’t consider humanitarian initiatives as part of our work, but rather our work is all part of a comprehensive humanitarian initiative. Supporting fair trade, empowering economies, enabling people to live a decent and dignified life, and giving individuals the opportunity to dream and aspire, represent the true meaning of human action, righteousness, charity and commitment to social responsibility.
“Therefore, we have developed our strategy to ensure sustainability and growth for us and for our partners. Serving humanity is the DNA of our organisation as it’s our daily routine and not an occasional seasonal activity or an instantaneous response. This is the essence of what we have learned from Sheikh Zayed’s legacy, which we commemorate every day, and particularly on Zayed Humanitarian Work Day.”
Sheikh Zayed and the UAE Founding Fathers were distinctive models for humanitarian work that started with the UAE citizens towards extending a helping hand to the needy aiming to spread a spirit of goodness and benevolence around the world. That’s why the UAE has become a global role model for humanity, tolerance and happiness.