Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives (MBRGI) spent Dh1.1 billion ($299 million) in 2021 helping 91 million people in 97 countries, its largest number of beneficiaries in a single year, the foundation's annual report revealed.
Despite the challenge of Covid-19, MBRGI increased the number of beneficiaries of its initiatives by eight million people compared with 2020.
It also expanded its programmes, campaigns and relief and community initiatives to an additional 15 countries – confirming its position as the largest regional system for humanitarian relief, development and community work.
During the two years of the pandemic, the foundation spent Dh2.3bn.
The figures were announced during a special event at Shindagha Majlis in Dubai, where Sheikh Mohammed, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai, chaired the meeting of the initiative’s board of trustees and reviewed the 2021 annual report.
He said the UAE will continue on its journey of helping others.
“Our humanitarian, relief and community initiatives are continuing. We will continue our work for the sake of people,” Sheikh Mohammed said.
He said the country was proud of the many programmes and initiatives that were delivered with the help of nearly 145,000 volunteers.
"I am proud of Noor Dubai which reached 33 million beneficiaries. I am proud of the Reading Challenge, which reached 22 million students [and] proud of Dubai Cares, Suqia UAE, our Humanitarian & Charity Establishment, our awards, our societal, knowledge and humanitarian conferences,” he said.
Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed, Crown Prince of Dubai and vice chairman of the board of trustees, said the achievements of MBRGI, with the help of staff and volunteers "have become a symbol of the UAE's commitment to man and humanity".
"The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives has become a comprehensive system to empower individuals and societies, based on Mohammed bin Rashid’s vision that humanitarian work is an investment in a more stable and prosperous future for humanity," he said.
"Empowering the human being is the basis for the well-being of societies and this is the message of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives, which is reflected in its programmes, projects and strategic partnerships.”
Mohammed Al Gergawi, Minister of Cabinet Affairs and Secretary General of MBRGI, said: "The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives builds today on its successes over recent years by designing and implementing excellent initiatives, enhancing its capabilities and expertise, continuing innovation in humanitarian relief and development work, and strengthening its pillars, thus enshrining the UAE’s status in this vital sector on the international level.”
100 million meals rises to one billion
At the start of Ramadan, Sheikh Mohammed launched UAE's One Billion Meals food campaign.
On Wednesday, the Dubai Ruler announced that he will donate the funds for 400 million meals to ensure the food campaign hit its target.
An impressive 600 million meals had already been secured through hundreds of thousands of generous donations since the campaign launched.
At the event at Shindagha Majlis, there was an unveiling of the Humanitarian Team mural, which includes pictures of all institutions affiliated with MBRGI.
Sheikh Mohammed signed the mural as a gesture of appreciation for the efforts of the employees and volunteers.
He also honoured the initiative's major donors and partners, who play an active role in achieving the humanitarian goals of the initiative.
Enhancing operational efficiency
MBRGI was established in 2015 as an umbrella for dozens of charity and humanitarian institutions that have been sponsored by Sheikh Mohammed for decades in a vision based on the institutionalisation of humanitarian and community work.
It includes 35 organisations and institutional initiatives that implement hundreds of projects, programmes and campaigns, within five main work pillars: humanitarian aid and relief; health care and disease control; spreading education and knowledge; innovation and entrepreneurship; and empowering communities.
MBRGI introduced enhancements to its operational efficiency and utilisation of resources in 2021, which helped it reach its largest number of beneficiaries.
In addition to its 571 employees, the initiative’s various campaigns attracted a record number of volunteers in 2021.
In total, 144,936 volunteers, an increase of 23,260 over 2020, supported the implementation of the many humanitarian relief, health, knowledge and cultural initiatives as well as community projects, programmes and campaigns.