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Big Heart, Sharjah Girl Guides tie up for girls’ education
By a Staff Reporter February 25, 2018
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SHARJAH: In line with the “Year of Zayed” and to coincide with World Thinking Day, celebrated by girl guides and girl scouts around the world, Sharjah Girl Guides (SGG) has collaborated with The Big Heart Foundation (TBHF), to launch its ‘Knots of Impact’ campaign with the aim of supporting girls’ education around the world.

To illustrate the campaign’s universal message, the initiative’s ‘Wall of Knots’ is an artwork which showcases the knots that girl guides and girl scouts learn across the globe to illustrate strength and determination.

The campaign was launched at SGG’s headquarters in the presence of Shaikha Abdulaziz Al Shamsi, Manager of SGG, Alia Obaid Al Musaibi, Senior Media Executive at TBHF, and a number of guides and brownies from SGG, the UAE Girl Guides Association and the Ras Al Khaimah Girl Guides.

Launched on World Thinking Day – an international day where girl guides and girl scouts around the world celebrate the meaning of guiding and its global impact – the Knots of Impact campaign aims to highlight values such as giving back to the community and social responsibility that are entrenched in the guiding principles and practices followed by SGG.

Ending on 3 June, Zayed Humanitarian Day, the campaign seeks to establish values of volunteering and giving within its brownies (7-11 years), guides (12-15 years) and senior guides (16-18 years); values that were embodied by the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, Founder of the UAE.

The campaign will allow senior guides, guides and brownies the opportunity to organise and be part of charitable events and activities to promote awareness and raise funds for TBHF’s Girl Child Fund.

“The value of giving is one of the main characteristics that shape the identity of Emirati society, which follows in the footsteps of the founding fathers of the nation, in particular the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, who laid out the humanitarian approach that is now embraced by individual and institutional members of the community,” Shaikha Al Shamsi said.

She added that SGG continues to adopt this approach in line with the directives and support of Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher Bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, wife of His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah, Chairperson of the UAE Girl Guides Association and Patron of SGG. 

“Inspired by Sheikha Jawaher’s vision, SGG has set a range of goals that reflect its belief in the importance of guiding and its role in developing girls’ personalities, fostering their skills and instilling the values of responsibility, citizenship, cooperation and dedication through various interactive programmes and workshops,” she said.

During the ceremony, Al Shamsi unveiled the ‘Wall of Knots,’ artwork, exemplifying the values of SGG and the ‘Knots of Impact’ campaign: “Decorated with knots that girl guides and girl scouts learn around the world, each knot on the wall symbolises the guiding pact and represents the values of strength and determination. For the duration of the campaign, the wall will travel to various public places and institutions across the UAE, to spread the message of giving and hope.”

For her part, Alia Obaid Al Musaibi said: “Although The Big Heart Foundation is best known as a charity dedicated to helping refugees and people in need worldwide, we realised through our direct contact with refugees in many countries, that education is the best investment in girls. Education is the only way to create future generations of empowered young women who are able to overcome difficulties and challenges and contribute to shaping their country’s future.”

She added: “As part of its efforts to support girls in pursuing their education, TBHF has established the Girl Child Fund by forging a partnership with the Malala Fund, with the support of Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher Bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, Chairperson of TBHF, who has always highlighted the importance of providing girls with access to education, developing their skills and abilities and supporting their efforts to become partners in the development and growth of their societies.”

During the ceremony, Alya Rashid Duaifes, a guide at SGG, addressed her peers about volunteering in Sri Lanka, in cooperation with Sharjah Charity International, to help those less fortunate: “I would like to share with you this incredible trip, where I learned of the several humanitarian assistance projects implemented by Sharjah Charity International in ‘Sharjah Village’ in Sri Lanka, and participated in organising several educational and fun activities for schoolchildren, widows, and orphans.”

She continued: “My favourite day of the whole trip was the first day of Eid – my first Eid away from home. We visited a number of families to give them Eid presents, and met with the local village residents and their children in the park. It was a truly eye-opening and educational experience for me.”

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