Al Jalila Foundation, a global healthcare philanthropic organisation founded by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Ruler of Dubai, to position the UAE at the forefront of medical innovation, launched Majlis Al Ata’a, a circle of visionaries from the UAE who believe in medical research as a crucial component of the nation’s long-term prosperity.
Majlis Al Ata’a is the first movement of its kind in the UAE to marshal the goodwill, influence and financial capability of a circle of prominent businessmen and philanthropists towards a common national goal. It was inaugurated yesterday by His Highness Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of Al Jalila Foundation, who hosted a Suhoor attended by businessmen and philanthropists, forming the initial pool of medical research patrons. AED30 million were raised, planting the seed of a long-term commitment that will leave a legacy for generations to come. The list of donors who have become members in Majlis Al Ata’a included: H.E. Khalaf Al Habtour, H.E. Raja Al Gurg, H.E. Abdulghaffar Hussain, Riyadh Sadek, Mohamed Al Ansari, Siddharth Balachandran, Dubai Holding and an anonymous donor.
His Highness Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of Al Jalila Foundation, commented: “Our visionary leadership has led us to become global frontrunners in tourism, aviation, hydro-carbons, logistics and banking, among several other industries. Medical research will support Dubai’s efforts to achieve similar status in healthcare excellence. A number of us have committed to this journey and tied their names to a future where we challenge our most prevalent health issues with the brainpower of our own biomedical scientists. Our mission is not only to lend financial support to medical research, but to make it a national dialogue, so there is enough of us to sail this ship.”
Her Excellency Raja Easa Saleh Al Gurg, Member of the Board of Trustees and Chairperson of the Board of Directors of Al Jalila Foundation, said: “We are proud to be launching Majlis Al Ata’a and grateful to the philanthropists who have chosen to lend their hearts, voices and financial support to medical research. The social and economic impact of what we are signing up for is immeasurable. Vaccines, as an example of medical innovation, prevent at least three million deaths and save 750,000 children from disability worldwide every year. Statistics from developed western nations suggest that every dollar invested in medical research leads to more than $2.5 of economic activity. This is the future that we envision for the UAE; this is what Majlis Al Ata’a will be remembered for by our children and their children.”
Dr Abdulkareem Sultan Al Olama, CEO of Al Jalila Foundation, commented: “Philanthropy is a key theme in our generous nation, and more widely in the Muslim world. It is estimated that somewhere between $200 billion and $1 trillion are spent in Zakat and voluntary charity every year. However, we are increasingly realising that charitable funds need to be channelled properly to deliver widespread as opposed to individual benefits. Continuous alms, known as Sadaqah Jariyah, can achieve massive benefits that transform the lives of entire societies, if channelled to programmes such as medical research. This is exactly what Al Jalila Foundation is determined to achieve through ground-breaking biomedical research in cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, obesity and mental health.”
The Suhoor was hosted at Jumeirah Zaabeel Saray, the venue sponsor. Majlis Al Ata’a is open to all philanthropists from the UAE. Like-minded visionaries who wish to become part of this movement, can contact Al Jalila Foundation through [email protected] or the Foundation’s website www.aljalilafoundation.ae.
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