Stars of the UAE: 5 local initiatives that have embraced the spirit of giving

Here we highlight a few brilliant companies, ideas and individuals committed to helping others

2017 is the ‘Year of Giving’ as announced by Sheikh Khalifa, president of the UAE. With those words in mind, we’ve compiled a list of a few of the nation’s top do-gooders:

UAE Food Bank

With the aim of giving food to those in need across the country (and beyond), His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum set up the UAE Food Bank at the beginning of 2017. A lofty but admirable goal, this initiative works to secure Dubai as the first emirate with zero food waste; since it began, Spinneys has donated an array of fresh produce including fruits, vegetables and meat. With the Dubai Municipality providing the logistics, companies like Arc Hospitality making meals and Tarahum distributing it to those in need, this is a worthy and life-changing drive.

Abu Dhabi Animal Shelter

There are lots of pets looking for a home, whether that be a temporary one – in which case, you can choose to foster an animal – or a permanent residence. Located in the Abu Dhabi Falcon Hospital, the organisation takes care of feral animals, treats them and returns or re-homes them. If you’re looking for a furry companion, visit their website.

Give Great Moments

Truly deserving of its name, this movement aims to make sure children don’t go without. Donate clothes, books and toys at any Majid Al Futtaim location (also helping to reduce waste) and they will be distributed to children in need across the UAE, Egypt, Oman and Bahrain. Log onto their website to find ‘The adventures of Dabdoub the bear, and life in Dreamville’, a tale that discusses the joys of sharing in a child-friendly narrative.

Emirates Wildlife Society

In partnership with WWF (World Wildlife Fund), the Emirates Wildlife Society works to protect ecosystems within the UAE and aims to cut back on the nation’s carbon footprint – find out how you can help here. The UAE has urbanised rapidly which has affected wildlife and the natural habitat, making it more important than ever to preserve as much as possible. Pick up one of our new, super-summery reusable bags in store; all profits go to supporting the conservation efforts of Emirates Wildlife Society-WWF.


Giving blood is crucial to the recovery of many – just one pint can save three lives. There are various hospitals and pop up locations around the UAE that offer facilities at which you can donate. Visit the blood donors website for details.