During the 11th Plenary Session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean (PAM) held in Porto city, Portugal, from 23-24 February 2017, Tariq Al Gurg, Chief Executive Officer at Dubai Cares, received the 2016 PAM Award in recognition of his strong and visible commitment, outstanding achievement, and active advocacy for quality education in developing countries, particularly in Mediterranean countries. This is yet another achievement by the UAE, added to the many achievements that have been accomplished by the country.
Al Gurg, the only personality to be awarded by PAM this year, has been a primary driver of success for the UAE-based global philanthropic organization since 2009. He has enabled Dubai Cares to contribute to the evidence-base in education, leverage funding and invest in strategic relationships and programs that support the global education agenda. His focus has been to develop Dubai Cares as a recognized best-case practitioner and a global leader in education program design and innovation that is grounded in a philosophy of continuous monitoring and evaluation and rigorous research. More recently, Al Gurg has been a key champion of Education in Emergencies globally, highlighting the critical need to provide education to children living in fragile and conflict-affected states and situations. He is also behind Dubai Cares’ selection to become a member of the High-Level Steering Group for the global ‘Education Cannot Wait’ fund.
After receiving the award, Tariq Al Gurg, Chief Executive Officer at Dubai Cares said: “I am both honored and humbled to be receiving this Award, which I consider to be not a personal accolade, but a testament to the outstanding work of Dubai Cares and the positive impact it has made on the lives of children in developing countries. If I should be recognized for anything, it should be the fact that I have made sure to surround myself with an extremely professional, devoted and driven group of professionals that has worked so well together across the years.”
Al Gurg’s banking experience, which stretched from 1996 to 2008, granted him the leadership and mentorship skills that helped him lead a team of around 40 professionals at Dubai Cares, the finance and investment experience to manage funds, the sales expertise which he utilized to expand on the organization’s fundraising efforts, as well as the management skills that enabled him to run the organization and closely oversee the design and implementation of its programmatic interventions through regular field visits in developing countries.
Al Gurg always had a personal tendency to carry out charity and development work, even from an early age. In 2006, prior to joining Dubai Cares, he co-founded the UAE Genetic Disease Association (GDA), for which he ran a successful fundraising campaign.
“This recognition for my work at Dubai Cares by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean – an organization which shares our core beliefs, values, and commitment to social and economic development – is a true honor for all those involved in our mission. I am confident it will further motivate us, raise awareness and engagement with our work, and encourage more people to support us as we strive to ensure children overcome the barriers of poverty and inequality to secure the education that is their right and hope,” Al Gurg added.
As part of its integrated, impactful and sustainable education programs launched in the Mediterranean region, Dubai Cares supported thousands of children in Bosnia & Herzegovina, Egypt, Jordan, Palestine, Lebanon as well Syrian refugees, all of which are PAM member states.
The PAM Award is awarded every year by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean to individuals, organizations or institutions who contribute through their actions to establishing bridges among the people of the region so as to foster understanding, mutual respect, socio-economic cooperation, political dialogue, confidence building and conflict solutions. The Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean (PAM) is the forum where the Parliaments of 28 states in the Mediterranean region come together and operate to reach common objectives towards the creation of the best political, social, economic and cultural environments and conditions for the fellow citizens of member states.