The Zayed Higher Organization for People of Determination (ZHO) and ADQ, an Abu Dhabi-based investment and holding company, today announced the launch of the ‘Bridges of Hope’ program to support people of determination in Egypt. The joint initiative is in cooperation with the Egyptian Ministry of Youth and Sports (MOYS), which oversees the Office of People of Determination and offers a full range of educational, behavioral, and rehabilitative services.

Zayed Higher Organization for People of Determination is representing the United Arab Emirates through its participation in the “Haya Karima” (Decent Life) initiative launched by His Excellency President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, President of the Arab Republic of Egypt, which aims to strengthen social opportunities and protection for people of determination, as part of efforts to elevate the quality of human development services for all societal categories.   

The ZHO and ADQ ‘Bridges of Hope’ program aims to develop 60 centers in several Egyptian villages, providing integrated services to support and empower people of determination from different backgrounds and skill-sets. A specialist team of social workers and speech pathologists will also conduct workshops to identify learning difficulties and provide people of determination with the specialized skills in order to overcome them, in addition to implementing programs designed to provide psychological and social support. Additionally, ZHO will offer awareness programs and facilitate knowledge transfer, in partnership with MOYS and other relevant authorities, for families and parents to equip them with the right resources to approach their children.

Dr. Ashraf Sobhi, the Egyptian Minister of Youth and Sports, reiterated Egypt’s commitment to integrating people of determination across social activities and projects, under the directive of President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi to empower them achieve their dreams and incorporate them within society. Dr. Sobhi also expressed his gratitude and appreciation to the UAE’s leadership and community for their ongoing support to Egypt.

“The collaboration between the Egyptian Ministry of Youth and Sports, Zayed Higher Organization, and ADQ, is the first significant project that will see us work hand-in-hand in service of Egypt’s youth and young adults through the implementation of a continuous stream of programs and projects,” commented Dr. Sobhi.

ZHO's Secretary General, His Excellency Abdulla Abdulalee Alhumaidan, praised the collaboration between the ZHO and ADQ, and the strong bilateral relations between Egypt and the UAE, led by His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi, commenting: "The longstanding bilateral relations between the UAE and Egypt are not only historic but also strategic as we both embark on enhancing the process of economic and social progress and advancement to ensure the welfare of all citizens, and this is also what we seek to achieve from our partnership with ADQ on our collaborative program – ‘Bridges of Hope’.”

His Excellency Abdulla Alhumaidan continued: "The implementation of the ‘Bridges of Hope’ program is in line with the directives of His Highness Sheikh Khalid bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of ZHO. The program reflects the steadfast international efforts of the UAE to reinforce the importance of humanitarian and relief aid, regionally and globally.”

Anas Albarguthi, Chief Operating Officer at ADQ, said: “Our collaboration with ZHO to deliver the ‘Bridges of Hope’ program will help to expand care for people of determination and facilitating their integration into society. Our enriching program will provide valuable opportunities for training, development, and vocational and therapeutic support. Bridges of Hope complements our joint US$20 billion (AED 73 billion) strategic investment platform with The Sovereign Fund of Egypt (TSFE), which was established in 2019 and aims to contribute to the economic development of Egypt and support its local communities.”

Commenting on the launch of the program, Dr. Walaa Jad Al Kareem, Director, ‘Hayah Karima’ (Decent Life) Initiative, Ministry of Local Development, said: “The ‘Hayah Karima’ (Decent Life) initiative encompasses development efforts aimed at transforming the lives of more than half of the Egyptian population, under the patronage of His Excellency President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi. As a comprehensive and integrated developmental program, we aim to make a positive impact on the quality of life for Egyptians, particularly those who reside in rural areas, through planned and invaluable activities and projects.”

“The ‘Bridges of Hope’ program demonstrates the brotherly ties between the Egyptian and Emirati communities and is an integral addition to the ‘Hayah Karima’ (Decent Life) initiative. It also reiterates the focus and dedication of Egypt’s leadership on people of determination, in line with the National Human Rights Strategy, which was launched by the President in September 2021. Through this program and with the support of our partners, we will develop the essential framework for empowering people of determination as we further integrate them into the community,” continued Dr. Walaa.