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Dubai Cares kicks off its Back to School edition of Volunteer Emirates
(17 June 2017)
500 volunteers join on the first day with 3,000 members expected to participate throughout the initiative

Dubai Cares, part of Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives, launched its “Back to School” edition of Volunteer Emirates in support of children in Jordan who are affected by the Syrian crisis. The first day of the initiative, which is taking place between June 17 and 22 at Al Boom Tourist Village, witnessed the participation of 500 volunteers from the UAE community who came together to pack school kits that will be distributed on 50,000 children ahead of the beginning of the new school year. Tariq Al Gurg, Chief Executive Officer at Dubai Cares kicked off the initiative and joined the volunteers in packing the school kits. More than 3,000 volunteers are expected to participate in the Union Coop-sponsored initiative. 

According to a 2016 UNHCR report, Jordan currently hosts 633,644 officially registered Syrian refugees of which 32% (approximately 201,600) are school aged children and youth. It is estimated that 40% - more than 90,000 of these children are out of school. In Za’atari camp of 79,138 refugees, there are about 30,000 school-aged children; one third of them are out of school. In Azraq, another refugee camp in the north of Jordan, 43% of school-aged children are out of school. However, 85% of Syrian refugee children in Jordan live in host communities scattered around the kingdom but with the highest density in the north. In host communities, the numbers are slightly lower than camps, where about 38% of school-aged refugees are out of school. 

Commenting on the latest edition of Volunteer Emirates which is line with the UAE's Year of Giving 2017, Tariq Al Gurg, Chief Executive Officer at Dubai Cares, said: “We are both overwhelmed and humbled by the turnout and commitment demonstrated by Dubai Cares' volunteers who continue to show selflessness in donating their time and energy towards supporting others in need. The team at Dubai Cares, alongside a group of committed and passionate volunteers, have ensured a smooth and seamless process of properly packing the school bags to ensure that every child received the exact school essentials he/she needs, as well as placing them in boxes, ready to be shipped to children in Jordan who are affected by the Syrian crisis. I would also like to once again thank Union Coop for making this initiative possible.”

Mr. Harib Mohammed Bin Thani Al Falasi, Director of Operations Division, on behalf of the CEO of Union Coop said: “Our support for Dubai Cares in this initiative stems from our commitment to humanitarian and social causes. As a national entity, we are devoted to contributing to the fulfillment of our wise leaders’ vision, and this constitutes an integral part of our strategy in the fields of social support and support of national organizations. Union Coop has dedicated around AED 83.5 million in 2016 toward CSR, with an aim to spread happiness and the spirit of giving within the community, and contribute to the country’s remarkable vision.” Bin Thani added: “Volunteer work has always been a core principle at Union Coop.” 

Nikhil Sayani, one of the participating volunteers said: “For me, supporting refugee children is not something exceptional, it’s something that we have to do and I am very proud to join Dubai Cares and to see today’s intense humane spirit among the UAE community. Providing school kits to refugee children is a powerful tool to help build resilient people and peaceful communities.”

Dubai Cares’ has partnered with ‘Save the Children’ for the distribution of the school kits among 50,000 children in Jordan affected by the Syrian crisis.

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