Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture), the Emirate’s dedicated entity for culture, arts, heritage, and literature, recently held a special ceremony at the Dubai Culture and Science seminar attended by Saeed Al Nabouda, Acting Director General of the Authority and advisor Dr Salah Al Qassim, to honour 83 volunteers who participated in the Dubai Festival for Youth Theatre.

The ceremony was held in recognition of the great role played by members of the ‘Asaad Shaab’ volunteer team and their contributions to the great success of the 12th edition of the Dubai Festival for Youth Theatre 2018 which took place from 6 – 17 October. The group displayed the highest levels of commitment to emulating the values of the late Sheikh Zayed that they embodied in every corner of the festival. They also helped in providing the necessary support to the organising committee, the theatrical groups, and visitors with all possible enthusiasm and desire to deliver the best and making certain to present the event with team spirit and in an elaborate manner.

Al Nabouda said: "This year's edition achieved its goals, and we attained the desired results thanks to the good planning and outstanding preparation, and we do not forget the dedication of the volunteers who showed full willingness to support us. These unknown soldiers deserve to be thanked for their crucial role in the success of the festival, especially since they excelled in all the tasks assigned to them, and it was possible to observe them throughout the site. Thus the "Year of Zayed" session was showcased in a distinctive suit."

Ahmed Saeed Al Meskari, a 35-year-old team leader from Al-Ain, joined the ‘Asaad Shaab’ volunteering team led by Ms Hamda Al Amri. He was in charge of the event’s volunteers to guide and kept up with them on a daily basis. He participated in more than 10 events to date and aims to take part in more events in service of the UAE. His passion for contributing encouraged him to withstand the commuting challenges he underwent to get to the festival.

Among the volunteers was 30-year-old, Dubai-based Hessa Ali Darwish Al Shehhi who also volunteered for the 2017 edition of the Dubai Festival for Youth Theatre based on her passion of serving the community. "I don't hesitate to volunteer for various events as I am now skilled at dealing with VIPs and stakeholders, and have developed strong bonds with people, increasing my self-confidence and becoming more social," she said.

Khalifa Mousa, a 23-year-old from the Emirate of Fujairah, describes his participation in the organisation of the festival as a successful and positive experience saying: "I learned a lot about organising events and dealing with the public. I also met new people who motivated me to work from the first day as a volunteer."

Omar Abd Al Muttalib, a 21-year-old student from the Higher College of Technology, says: "Through my participation with the ‘Asaad Shaab’ volunteering team and taking part in this festival, I completed the required volunteer hours for my graduation. However, I genuinely liked the job and completed my volunteering role in full at the festival even though it was not required of me to graduate. I had a pleasant experience, I met good people, and I gained a lot of personal skills."

Dubai-based Sarah Salman Jawhar, a 25-year-old graduate from Sokinah Bint Al Hussein School, says she enjoyed the experience and gained useful life skills. "My self-confidence increased, and I mastered the ways of dealing with people. This experience prompted me to continue to participate in volunteer work thanks to the encouragement of ‘Asaad Shaab.’

The Authority successfully presented a local theatrical event with international standards, having organised various events at a befitting prestigious level for the Emirate of Dubai and its growing cultural status that has contributed to its consolidation on the lists of world capitals for culture and arts.

Moreover, the festival justified its important role in the refinement of national theatrical skills and provided a unique platform for Emirati talents from all over the country to supplement the national theatres with new young faces. This year's edition also helped achieve the Authority's goal of accelerating the development of the artistic and cultural landscape in the Emirate, empowering these sectors to achieve happiness for the Dubai community, and helping to achieve one of Dubai Plan 2021’s objectives for a city of creative and empowered individuals, filled with pride and happiness."

Dubai Culture aims to enhance Dubai’s cultural scene and draw attention to the UAE’s rich heritage. The Authority’s mandate is to build bridges of constructive dialogue between different civilisations and cultures to enhance Dubai's position as a creative and sustainable global city for culture, heritage, arts, and literature, with the aim to empower these sectors by developing creative and innovative projects and initiatives locally, regionally, and globally.


Source: Cicero and Bernay