Sharjah Airport wins accolade as a friendly entity for people - GulfToday

Sharjah Airport wins accolade as a friendly entity for people


A top official of Sharjah Airport receives the award at the event.

Staff Reporter, Gulf Today

Sharjah Airport obtained a Gold Accreditation Certificate as a friendly entity for people with mobility disabilities from the World Disability Union, thus becoming the fourth airport in the world to obtain this certificate.

Ali Salim Al Midfa, Chairman of Sharjah Airport Authority (SAA) said: “Sharjah Airport is constantly working to be one of the best airports in the region and rest of the world, for the level of services and facilities provided to all categories of travellers. We are pleased with this accomplishment as it shows the efforts and directives of His Highness Dr Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah. His Highness vision was to support and care for those with limited mobility, providing various needs that contribute to facilitating the disabled, and serving as a role model for investing in people. Sheikh Sultan has enhanced the status of each individual, granting them their full rights and access to living life.”

He added: “Sharjah Airport is keen to harness all possibilities, and provide the appropriate environment in its facilities to be smoothly operational for people with limited mobility, while providing the necessary training for employees to deal with this important segment of society. The airport provides all facilities that make their experience of traveling through the airport fast, easy, accessible, and safe, and is in accordance with the highest international standards.”

This honour is added to the airport’s record of achievements and excellence, including providing the best environment for people with limited mobility, and for its implementation of environmental standards for people with limited mobility on aircraft and other special services.

Additionally, the World Disability Union honoured the bodies that apply environmental standards for people with disabilities, and granted them accreditation certificates as “Friendly Entity for People with Mobility Disabilities”, in a ceremony held on Saturday, October 9, 2021, at the Oceanic Hotel in Khor Fakkan.

The Emirate of Sharjah was awarded awarded the city the title of “a friendly city for people with mobility disabilities, by the World Federation of the Disabled, during the World Cities Day 2018 ceremony.

The Pearl Initiative: The Pearl Initiative, in partnership with the Philanthropy Network, has concluded a year-long virtual webinar series that highlighted the capabilities philanthropy has in driving new and innovative solutions to address unprecedented global concerns, such as COVID-19, and the relief efforts to mitigate their impact. Key featured international speakers included Dr Lawrence H. Summers, former US Treasury Secretary and President Emeritus at Harvard University; Patrick Chalhoub President of Chalhoub Group; Fadi Ghandour, Executive Chairman at Wamda Group and Founder of Aramex; and Clare Woodcraft, Executive Director at Cambridge Centre for Strategic Philanthropy.

Under the Governance in Philanthropy programme, more than 300 Gulf-based philanthropists, philanthropic advisors, private wealth owners and CSR professionals from the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, and the greater Arab world convened to share knowledge, experiences and best practices to improve their giving practices and optimise the impact of their philanthropic giving, particularly in times of crisis, such as that of the COVID-19 pandemic. The discussions shed light on the philanthropic responses to the pandemic in the United States, MENA, Africa and Southeast Asia. This included the people and organisations involved, as well as their strategies and methods in aiding communities in the short-term but also in long-term and sustainable ways.

Other discussions focused on how to better structure their giving strategy and how to connect to others working in similar spaces to reduce duplication of efforts. Decision-makers of leading foundations and corporations, including the Big Heart Foundation, Chalhoub Group, CCC, Al Handal Group, World Food Programme, Kanoo Group, and a number of local nonprofit organisations contributed and benefited from the these regular convenings as they reshaped their giving strategies and approaches in the midst of the pandemic. Ranya Saadawi, Executive Director of the Pearl Initiative, said: “The philanthropic landscape in the Gulf region is evolving with the increasing role of the private sector in addressing social and environmental challenges. This comes with an increasing demand for knowledge, tools, and resources to devise strategic philanthropic and corporate responsibility plans. That is what the Pearl Initiative’s Governance in Philanthropy Programme aimed to achieve with this series of webinars along with its collaborator, the Philanthropy Network, and with support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.”

Rob Rosen, Director at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation added: “The virtual webinar series provided participants with the platform to showcase how to improve philanthropic activities and optimise the impact of their CSR and investments. Over the course of the pandemic, it has been important for philanthropists to support communities, resourcing long-term change that leads to sustainable solutions for regional development. This successful year-long project promotes the regional transition away from traditional methods of philanthropy, CSR and corporate giving, towards a more strategic understanding to drive greater impacts.”

Since the launch of its Governance in Philanthropy programme in 2017, the Pearl Initiative has been actively raising awareness, creating networks, and inspiring action, providing over 700 professionals and leaders working in the philanthropic and corporate philanthropy sector with the knowledge and know-how to improve their giving practices and optimise the impact of their investments.

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