• 22 August 2009

Dubai Cares, the UAE-based philanthropic establishment led by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Prime Minister and Vice-President and Ruler of Dubai, has launched its ‘Thirst for Education’campaign to provide children in developing countries with access to clean drinking water, one way is through building wells in schools. This campaign will run throughout Ramadan giving the UAE community an opportunity to contribute to an initiative that will have a profound impact on the lives of children.

Since its launch in Ramadan 2007, Dubai Cares has been actively addressing the educational needs of children globally. Due to the active and generous involvement of the UAE community, the charitable establishment is currently reaching more than 4 million children in 20 countries. In its first 2 years of operation, Dubai Cares is building and renovating 2,172 schools, training 22,370 teachers, establishing 3,157 Parent-Teachers Associations, creating 489 libraries and distributing 1.3 million books written in local languages.

Her Excellency Reem Al Hashimy, Chairperson of Dubai Cares stated, “We are proud of these achievements but this is just the beginning. We need to tear down the barrier to education for millions of children globally.  Today we are launching our ‘Thirst for Education’ campaign which has been set up as a sustainable initiative that can transform the lives of children around the world. Millions of children are deprived of education because they have no access to clean water”, she said.  “Global statistics show that contaminated water is one of the biggest issues facing children worldwide.  A child dies every 15 seconds from illnesses caused by drinking contaminated water and millions are too sick to attend school regularly. In fact, 443 million school days are missed every year because children lack access to clean water sources.”

Al Hashimy continued, “Many children do not attend school because the job of collecting water for the family falls upon them.  On average, children have to walk 6 kilometers every day just to collect clean water for their families. Without clean water children cannot live a healthy life. Without good health, it is almost impossible for a child to get an education. Our access to clean water is something most of us take for granted, however, it is a catastrophic barrier to basic human development in many parts of our world. A small contribution can have an enormous impact on the life of a child.”

This year, Dubai Cares has focused on establishing the link between primary education in the developing world and access to clean water by chairing the first in a series of roundtable forums in New York on the link between water, sanitation and primary education programs in the developing world. Dubai Cares is currently integrating the prioritization of water, sanitation and hygiene interventions in to all of its education programs.


Donations towards the ‘Thirst for Education’ campaign can be made as follows:



30 AED

1 child with clean drinking water for 1 year

1,200 AED

Classroom of 40 children with clean drinking water for 1 year

6,000 AED

School of 200 children with clean drinking water for 1 year

36,000 AED

Build a well that serves an entire village and provides 1,200 children with clean drinking water for 1 year


Donations for the Dubai Cares ‘Thirst for Education’ campaign can be made through a variety of channels. During the month of Ramadan shoppers can add AED 5 to purchases at participating retailers. Donations can also be made online at www.dubaicares.ae and directly through the ‘Thirst for Education’ donation boxes at malls throughout the UAE. A Corporate Social Responsibility Kit which provides step-by-step guidance on how to implement a campaign within the workplace is also available on the Dubai Cares website. Donors can also contribute through SMS. To sponsor children’s access to clean drinking water for one year, please SMS the word “donation” to the following SMS Codes:


Donation Amount

SMS Code

AED 30 = 1 child


AED 90 = 3 children


AED 300 = 10 children


AED 600 = 20 children


AED 900 = 30 children



About Dubai Cares

Dubai Cares, a UAE-based philanthropic establishment, was launched in September 2007 by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai to improve children’s access to primary education in developing countries.

Dubai Cares works in accordance with globally recognized best practices for international NGOs, and has active partnerships with organizations such as Care International, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, OXFAM, Room to Read, Save the Children, Médecins Sans Frontières, UNICEF and UNRWA. It implements comprehensive primary education programs in 20 countries including Bangladesh, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Cambodia, Chad, Comoros Islands, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Laos, Maldives, Mauritania, Nepal, Niger, Occupied Palestinian Territories, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Yemen and Zambia, and with Palestinian refugees in Jordan and Lebanon, to help attain the United Nations Millennium Development Goal 2 of achieving universal primary education.

To learn more, please visit www.dubaicares.ae

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