President Sheikh Mohamed meets Iraqi helping to make Abu Dhabi greener

Sinan Al Awsi has planted more than 200 trees in seven years to spruce up his neighbourhood

President Sheikh Mohamed with Sinan Al Awsi at Qasr Al Bahr on Tuesday. Photo: UAE Presidential Court
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President Sheikh Mohamed has paid tribute to a community-spirited Abu Dhabi resident who has brightened up his neighbourhood by planting hundreds of trees.

The UAE leader lauded the green-fingered efforts of Iraqi engineer Sinan Al Awsi during a meeting at Qasr Al Bahr on Tuesday.

Mr Al Awsi, 62, who has lived in the Emirates since 1999, has set aside time to make Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Street greener over the past seven years.

Abu Dhabi man plants more than 200 trees outside his residence

Abu Dhabi man plants more than 200 trees outside his residence

He has won support from many neighbours for his efforts, which received acclaim when video of him on planting duty appeared on social media.

Sheikh Mohamed “applauded his efforts and expressed appreciation for such benevolent initiatives”, state news agency Wam reported.

He said that “all residents of the UAE are valued partners in the nation's development process”.

Mr Al Awsi expressed his gratitude for the opportunity to meet the President and appreciated his recognition of initiatives that promote sustainability and nature.

Branching out

He recently spoke to The National about his horticultural journey, which involved planting 105 coconut and 104 plumeria trees in addition to more than 80 shrubs and flowers, transforming a 500-metre stretch into an urban oasis.

Last month, Mr Al Awsi received a visit from Mohammed Al Shorafa, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Department of Municipalities and Transport, to thank him for his hard work.

Mr Al Shorafa conveyed the greetings of Sheikh Mohamed.

“I always say, any good deed in the UAE will not be lost or wasted,” Mr Al Awsi told The National previously.

“I’m grateful to President Sheikh Mohamed because he knew about my initiative. I’m proud as an Iraqi to be recognised and also for contributing to the ecosystem and sustainability of Abu Dhabi.”

His work began when he was granted permission by his landlord and authorities to spruce up the area.

Mr Al Awsi, who has worked on engineering projects such as Sheikh Zayed Bridge, found he had another grand design taking shape.

He bought a lorryload of special soil, installed water pipes and planted the trees.

“Abu Dhabi Municipality has been very supportive with me and gave me the permission to extend planting the trees,” he said.

Every Friday, on his weekend, he wakes and starts working and looking after the trees from 6am to 11.30am.

“It required hard work but my passion for gardens and planting kept me going. Every day, I look at the trees and smile at what I managed to do,” he said.

“These trees are my legacy in the UAE. People who will pass by this place in the future will pray for the person who planted them.”

His good deeds have led to a nomination in the Abu Dhabi Awards, which honour community champions across the emirate.

Updated: June 14, 2023, 11:09 AM