Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, the Arab world is poised to celebrate the Arab Hope Makers 2018 Awards Ceremony. This second edition of the largest initiative of its kind in the Arab world has recorded more than 87,000 participants.
Set to take place in the presence of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum on May 14 at the Sound Stage Hall in Dubai Studio City, the gala evening will be broadcast live on television and on social media. Two hundred representatives of various Arab media outlets and key influencers will attend the event.
Mohammad bin Abdullah Al Gergawi, Minister of Cabinet Affairs and the Future, and Secretary General of Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives, said: "Only hope and positive action can renew Arab civilization to build generations that cherish its identity and traditions. The vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum seeks to harness all opportunities to open doors for hope in the Arab world."
He noted that through the Arab Hope Makers initiative, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum aims to transform the Arab individual from a person who is waiting to get lucky to succeed in life to a person with a purpose who is the maker of his own destiny, and who inspires those around him to take the initiative and contribute to society.
He commented: "Our Arab world is full of heroes who have devoted their lives to giving. Their innovative ideas and selfless deeds bring great benefits to their communities. The Arab Hope Makers initiative testifies that goodness is inherent in the Arab world, that altruism and generosity are deep-rooted in its women and men, and that inspirational acts have the power to fight negativity and ignorance."
He added: "In line with the initiative's objective of highlighting the efforts of inspiring individuals who spearhead positive change, we wanted to share the ceremony with the entire community, and therefore we decided to offer free public admission tickets. Our mission is to continue the stories of these heroes and follow in their footsteps. Heroism has many forms, and it is something we can all aspire to achieve. Our heroes do not have supernatural abilities – instead, they have a highly developed sense of personal responsibility and an absolute belief that nothing is impossible."
With more than 17,000 people registered online to attend the awards ceremony to honour this year’s hope makers and announce the ultimate winner of the 2018 edition, the gala evening will be covered by six Arab media outlets from Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Jordan, Lebanon and the UAE, in addition to direct follow-up coverage through personal accounts and websites. Millions of people across the Arab world will watch the event.
Dubai TV will broadcast the ceremony live starting from 6:30pm UAE time, while the initiative will leverage its ArabHopeMakers YouTube, Facebook and Twitter handles to provide live coverage to the world.
The second edition of the Arab Hope Makers initiative has received strategic support from multiple domestic and international companies in a bid to enhance the success of the largest hope-making initiative in the Arab world. Dubai Media Incorporated, through Dubai TV, will provide a live broadcast of the event, while MBC Group is to offer full media support. Meraas and Dubai Studio City have provided their facilities to stage the final ceremony, while Platinum Records has arranged the entertainment for the night.
During the awards ceremony, Emirati recording artist Hussain Al Jassmi will perform a song, specially written for the occasion, that honors the champions of humanitarian and community action. Other renowned Arab artists including Palestinian pop star Mohammed Assaf, Iraqi singer and songwriter Hatem Al Iraqi, Ahmed Jamal and Yemeni singer Fouad Abdul Wahed will also participate in the spectacular finale show that celebrates life and hope in the Arab world.
To reflect the initiative’s reach throughout the Arab world, the logo of Arab Hope Makers was displayed in March and April 2018 on iconic landmarks, such as the Citadel of Saladin in Cairo, the Kuwait Towers in Kuwait City, the Jordan Archaeological Museum in Amman, and the Raouche Rock in Beirut. Closer to home, the logo was projected on four prominent buildings in Abu Dhabi, including the headquarters of the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) and the International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC), the World Trade Center Abu Dhabi and Marina Mall, as well as the Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium in Al Ain.
Some 230 Emirati and other Arab volunteers are participating in organizing the initiative’s final ceremony. Volunteers are distributed across five teams responsible for event management, registering attendants, welcoming guests, logistics and media relations. Each team has set up a dedicated operations room to ensure an unforgettable experience for the attendees and audiences around the world.
The innovative Arab Hope Makers advertisement that His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum published on his social media accounts marked the launch of the initiative’s second edition. The advertisement announced a job opening for anyone from the Arab world regardless of age. Applicants needed to be skilled in giving and serving people, be positive and believe in the capabilities of Arab nations. The advertisement also mandated that they had at least one social initiative to their credit. The compensation, according to the advertisement, is AED1 million. The announcement sparked an unprecedented response with thousands of shares, likes and comments nominating candidates, suggesting ideas and asking questions.
Saudi Arabia topped the list of candidates for the Arab Hope Makers, exceeding 18% of the total number of initiatives, followed by Egypt in second place with about 12%. Algeria and Morocco took the third and fourth place with more than 10% and 9% respectively, while the UAE ranked fifth with more than 8% of the nominations.
The Arab Hope Makers entries comprised diverse humanitarian and community initiatives focusing on vital sectors that meet the most pressing needs of their specific environment. Community service initiatives had the highest representation with 36%, followed by educational initiatives amounting to more than 12%, while health and medical initiatives accounted for over 5% of the total submissions. Other entries included environmental, technical, cultural, youth and women’s empowerment initiatives.
As for age distribution, young participants (under the age of 35) topped the nominations with 71% of the total entries. Hope Makers aged 21 to 35 made up nearly 56% of the total number of candidates, followed by the 36-to-50 age group registering more than 19%. In third place came young people aged 20 and under with 15% of the entries, while candidates over 51 took fourth and final place, accounting for less than 10% of the participants.
Regional media as well as thousands of social media accounts have been sharing inspiring stories related to this year's edition. Arab influencers have highlighted humanitarian projects that motivate and inspire them. Moreover, the Arab Hope Makers website has received more than two million visits less than two months after the launch of the second edition of the initiative.
The Arab Hope Makers committee formed specialized volunteer teams to review the more than 87,000 applications the initiative received this year. The screening comprised multiple phases with the involvement of several sub-committees that studied all the information included and sorted the entries according to category.
Subsequently, expert researchers examined all the documents, videos, photos and links submitted with the applications to verify the credibility of the initiatives and evaluate their impact on the community, and submitted their recommendations to the concerned committees.
Fifteen participants have reached the finals and will compete for the title of Arab Hope Maker 2018 to be announced on May 14.
A part of Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives, the Arab Hope Makers initiative aims to recognize individuals, groups, and humanitarian and charitable non-profit organizations from across the Arab world that work to leverage all available, albeit often limited resources for the good of mankind without expectations of reward or gratitude.