Dubai YouTuber joins UN in fight for gender equality

Female YouTube stars are being appointed as 'Change Ambassadors' to the United Nations, ahead of International Women’s Day — and one of them is Dubai YouTuber, Hayla Ghazal.

DUBAI // Female YouTube stars are being appointed as “change ambassadors” to the United Nations, ahead of International Women’s Day – and one of them is Hayla Ghazal from Dubai.

The year-long partnership with the United Nations appoints online personalities as ambassadors to the UN’s sustainable development action campaign.

Mitchell Toomey, director of UN Sustainable Development Goals Action Campaign, said 193 countries made gender equality a priority when they signed the sustainable development agenda last September.

“The campaign is excited to work with YouTube to bring together seven female YouTube influencers as change ambassadors. We hope to work with these role models to turn influence into action,” said Mr Toomey.

“We’re the first group of YouTube female creators to join the UN in their efforts to fight for gender equality,” said Hayla Ghazal, the only ambassador from the Middle East.

“I hope to help women find their voices through YouTube so that they can also share their perspectives on the challenges we all face,” said the 20-year old Syrian.

Ms Ghazal shares videos about lifestyle and entertainment. She has built a family of fans and her bridal and gown shop, Hayla Couture, at Dubai’s Sunset Mall.

She said she hoped to empower girls to use technology to make their voices heard.

“We are a lucky generation to have the internet and that’s an advantage. It allows us to have a voice,” said Ms Ghazal.

On her plans as an ambassador, Ms Ghazal said: “We’re starting an international women’s campaign next week and there’s so much to come. I’m so excited to encourage people to start doing more, for women to be as ambitious as they’d like.”

The first group of change ambassadors includes Ingrid Nilsen (US), Jackie Aina (US), Yuya (Mexico), Taty Ferreira (Brazil), Louise Pentland (UK) and Chika Yoshida (Japan).