Emirati philanthropist Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair established a fund of Dh100 million to educate thousands of refugee children.
As a momentary relief to the young people and children in the war hit regions of Jordan, Lebanon and other Arab countries, the Emirati government has decided to set up a three-year fund for the schooling of a minimum of 5,000 immigrant children. Besides supporting the financially struggling refugees in the UAE, financial aid will also be extended to other countries that conducting educational programmes for refugees.
In order to get admission to various educational institutions and non-government organisations working with refugee children and youth, a competitive selection process will be conducted to award grants for children and youth in secondary, vocational and tertiary levels.
The flood of refugees is causing high financial stress for host countries. This is the major cause for establishing this fund especially in the year of Zaed, said Mr Al Ghurair. He pointed out the role of philanthropists in overcoming the challenge of lack of educational opportunities for young people. The conflict interrupted lives of young people definitely deserve a good future and must be able to rebuild their future, he added. The next round funding proposals will be invited early next year and before the beginning of new school year, the grants will be awarded to partner organizations in UAE, Jordan and Lebanon. In 2016, Abdulla Al Ghurair Foundation for Education in collaboration with Massachusetts Institute of Technology launched an Open Learning Scholar Programme. An online learning system that provides access to a World-class education to Arabs across the region is also under consideration. As per the UNICEF’s (UN children agency) estimate, around two million children have left unschooling after the conflict in Syria.
The fund provided is reflecting the UN approach of work together to ensure, people who have forced to leave their countries have rebuilt their future and help them competent to control their future, said Filippo Grandi, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. Mr Grandi added, the mentality of Arab world’s business community towards supporting displaced community is highlighted through this fundraising.