Egypt, Cairo - On the occasion of Universal Children’s Day, the Arab regional office of UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, awarded Her Highness Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak, founder and president of the UAE’s Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, its prestigious annual award in appreciation of her role in the campaign of Every Woman Every Child, the global movement that mobilizes international and national actions by governments, the UN, the private sector and civil society to address major health issues facing women, children and adolescents.
The award ceremony took place during the Fatima Bint Mubarak Forum on Motherhood and Childhood forum, organized by the UAE Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood in Abu Dhabi on Sunday 20 November, in the presence of experts in the fields of health, education and developments from the UAE, the Arab region and beyond.
“The establishment of Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood with Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak at its head was a true game changer for maternal and child health in the UAE,” said UNFPA’s director for the Arab region Luay Shabaneh. “Her leadership and energy have ensured that the education of young girls remained high on the national agenda, something that has been key for the development of the UAE society,” he added.
With a particular focus on innovations in the field of education, participants in the event examined innovative practices that contribute to the development of skills, talents and intellectual and mental abilities during the phase of early childhood. They also highlighted the role of parents, schools and education professionals in the developing the abilities of young children.
“Children are the basis for all dimensions of sustainable development. We cannot successfully address early child development challenges without addressing other development issues linked to it,” said Every Woman Every Child’s Senior Manager, Ms. Nana Taona Kuo. Poverty reduction, education, nutrition, gender equality, social protection and inclusion are also key components of progress, Ms. Kuo stressed. “That is why cross-sector work and partnerships are critical in making real and lasting impact.”
It is estimated that over 200 million children under five years of age worldwide are unable to attain their full developmental potential, with long lasting implications on the children themselves and on societies as a whole. The UAE have been a leader in promoting healthier societies and a champion for the Every Woman Every Child movement, an international movement supported by the United Nations. H.E Rym Al Falasy, Secretary General of the UAE’s Supreme Council for Women and Children and a member of the High-level Advisory Group for Every Woman Every Child has herself been instrumental in the UAE’s support the Every Woman Every Child platform, including by hosting an annual meeting by the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood for all those involved in the movement.
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