Founding Father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan is the Emirates' role model for its humanitarian work, said Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai.
Writing on Twitter to mark Zayed Humanitarian Work Day, Sheikh Mohammed said: “We remember our Founding Father, the mentor, our role model in humanitarian work, who fed people, watered trees, had mercy for the poor and fulfilled the needs of the destitute.
“He offered his heart to the homeless and the impoverished, and to them he was their home and their homeland. May God have mercy on him and may he dwell in paradises as wide as the heavens and earth. Amen.”
Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, underlined the UAE's commitment to Sheikh Zayed's legacy.
“On Zayed Humanitarian Day, we reaffirm our long-standing commitment to continuing the legacy of the late Sheikh Zayed, whose pioneering generosity and commitment to helping others reached people and communities in need around the world,” Sheikh Mohamed wrote on Twitter.
Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Co-operation, said the day celebrates the legacy of Sheikh Zayed and continuing the journey of humanitarian giving.
"My father taught me that giving is a duty and not a favour from anyone," he said, writing on Twitter.
Dr Anwar Gargash, diplomatic adviser to President Sheikh Khalifa said: "On this day, as all days, we remember his charitable journey that he led with determination and hope to build a homeland that he wanted as a beacon of development and leadership."
Zayed Humanitarian Work Day falls each year on Ramadan 19, the date on the Hijri calendar that Sheikh Zayed died in 2004.
The day is an annual occasion to announce the launch of humanitarian and charity initiatives through the many official community events held in the Emirates.
Sheikh Zayed was a symbol of giving and providing humanitarian aid to people around the world. Thanks to his efforts, the UAE gained a notable regional and international humanitarian stature.
Between 1971 to 2004, the UAE provided development and humanitarian aid worth Dh90.5 billion to about 117 countries, news agency Wam said.
That legacy is evident with the current One Billion Meals campaign that aims to feed underprivileged people in 50 countries.
Individuals, philanthropists and companies throughout the Emirates have come together to make 194,000 donations to the cause.
The project also supports efforts to achieve the UN’s second Sustainable Development Goal, to end hunger by 2030.
Last year, the UAE set a target of raising enough donations for 100 million meals. It was reached within 10 days.
In 2020, the 10 Million Meals campaign supported communities hit by Covid-19 throughout the UAE.