Thursday 18 October 2018

UAE Food Bank opens 2nd location in Dubai

DUBAI, October 17, 2017

The second operational site of the UAE Food Bank was launched on Monday at Al Bada area near Canadian University under the patronage of Easa Saleh Al Gurg Charity Foundation.

The UAE Food Bank also signed cooperation agreements with three other charity organisations and 13 foodstuff companies during the occasion, reported Wam, the Emirates official news agency.

"The UAE Food Bank is one of the most important values of giving by the people of the UAE and is moving forward to be one of the largest humanitarian establishments in the country, in a way that translates the objectives of the UAE leadership to spread the virtue of charity and establish a culture of giving within the framework of great official organisational and people participation," said Sheikha Hind bint Maktoum bin Juma Al Maktoum, chairperson of the Board of Trustees of UAE Food Bank and wife of the Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, in a statement issued on the occasion.

Hussain Nasser Lootah, director General of Dubai Municipality and deputy chairman of the Board of Trustees of UAE Food Bank said, "The UAE Food Bank, which falls under the umbrella of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives Foundation, draws special significance as an initiative that has local and regional dimensions, and global human values.

"It is also a social responsibility and promotes volunteerism by encouraging institutions and people to engage in the Bank's activities to collect excess food from the concerned organisations and distribute it to the needy and the deserving," Lootah said.

"The UAE Food Bank is an integrated humanitarian system to establish the value of feeding. It includes hotels, food factories, farms, hospitality establishments, supermarkets and a huge number of volunteers. It deals professionally with surplus fresh and canned food under the supervision of the concerned authorities and distributes it inside and outside the country in cooperation with a network of local and international humanitarian and charity organisations. The Bank is partnering with major hotel chains, supermarkets, food factories and farms and will open its doors to volunteers to contribute to the distribution of food inside and outside the country," added Lootah.

He said that the ultimate goal is to put this great value within a sustainable framework, as feeding the food is among the distinguished qualities and the values of the people of the UAE, and the legacy of Sheikh Zayed.

"Today, we strive through this new establishment, to involve the largest number of community organisations and volunteers in a new system for charity and giving following the footsteps of our forefathers," Lootah pointed out.

"We seek through the UAE Food Bank to consolidate this aspect in our new generations by providing the opportunity for all to be part of the permanent charitable and humanitarian movement that will take UAE to reach to new levels as Zayed wanted and endeavoured to cultivate among his people," he said.

The second operational location of UAE Food Bank will be an indicator of the performance of the Bank as a whole," said Lootah, adding that the work will be closely monitored and the operational mechanism evaluated and reviewed to provide a benchmark for future establishment of new locations throughout the UAE in the first launch phase and then the launch of branches and sites in other countries according to the future plan.

He pointed out that the inauguration of the first operational site of UAE Food Bank was preceded by a pilot launch, during which all the technological, technical and logistical aspects were monitored and followed-up of the collection and distribution operations according to the specified timetables and according to the specified frameworks to ensure the compatibility of operations and general performance according to plan.

The total quantity of food items received by UAE Food Bank reached 136 tonnes, while the maximum quantity of food received daily was 10,245 kg, the lowest was 30 kg, and the average was 680 kg.

During the period from April to September 2017, the highest amount of food received was in September (52,335 kg), while June witnessed the lowest amount of 4,845 kg of food.

The amount of food distributed through charities since the start of the bank was about 135,795 kg, of which 68,175 kg was through Tarahim Association, 53,415 kg through Al Ihsan charity Association, 8,625 kg through Dar Al Ber Society, 2,850 kg through Bait Al Khair, and 2,730 kg through Dubai Charity Association.

Dr. Raja Easa Saleh Al Gurg, Chairperson of Essa Saleh Al Gurg Charity Foundation, said, "I am pleased to participate in the opening of the second UAE Food Bank site. This initiative was launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. We, at Easa Saleh Al Gurg Charity Foundation, have the honour to establish, build, equip and operate this site here in the Bada area with the full funding of our organisation."

"Our organisation will also fully finance the establishment and operation of the UAE Food Bank's next location in Al Muhaisinah, in accordance with our agreement with the Bank and Dubai Municipality, signed in June 2017, under which the Easa Saleh Al Gurg Charitable Foundation will be the permanent sponsor of these two sites," she said.

"Today's opening of this site is a new step in giving and charity, the two characteristics of the UAE community both inside and outside the UAE. The UAE Food Bank initiative is a pioneering idea for the purpose of establishing a culture of charity and giving in the society through the involvement of all segments of the society in its programs, campaigns and initiatives, and to reduce the cost of food that is disposed of in the UAE annually, which is estimated at about Dhs13 billion," said Al Gurg.

"Our Foundation has many objectives to achieve in the fields of charitable work, such as building mosques, healthcare, school and university education, sponsoring orphans and caring people of determination and others. Our organization also gives great attention to the projects of preserving the blessings and providing food for the poor and needy inside and outside the country, which has made us the pioneers in giving full-time sponsorship of the two sites of UAE Bank Food initiative," she said.

"I invite companies, associations, organizations and businessmen to take part in sponsoring this new institution, UAE Food Bank, an integrated humanitarian system to achieve and consolidate the value of food for the needy and the poor within a sustainable institutional framework. I would also like to emphasize the great role of our strategic partner, Dubai Municipality, one of the parties to our agreement with UAE Food Bank, for its efforts and its great potential to make this initiative a success," said Al Gurg.

"The cooperation and partnership of our organization with UAE Bank and Dubai Municipality is undoubtedly something that we are keen to continue in the future, and we emphasize its growth and expansion," she added.

The launch of the second operational site of UAE Food Bank will be the second cornerstone for the Bank's operations. The second branch will be followed by branches and other operational locations in different regions of Dubai this year, and the establishment of branches and locations across the country and then centers and locations of the Bank outside the country, within a reasonable time frame, to serve the affected and disadvantaged communities, refugee communities, survivors of wars and natural disasters.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid had launched the UAE Food Bank early January in conjunction with his 11th Accession Day celebrations. The bank aims to collect surplus food from the hotels and hospitality sector establishments, restaurants, supermarkets, foodstuff markets, factories and food farms and distribute them to those in need, both within and outside the country, in cooperation with a network of local and international humanitarian and charitable institutions.

Dubai Municipality oversees the operations of the Bank by following up the process of collecting, preserving and storing food in accordance with the best standards of food safety and hygiene. The Municipality will also develop training programs for volunteers on the preservation and packaging of foods according to the specified rules and regulations. The Municipality has also provided a guideline to the hospitality and food industry and charitable organizations on the standards of food safety and hygiene and the terms and conditions for donating their surplus foods.

Tags: Dubai | UAE Food Bank |

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