For her contributions in the humanitarian field, Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein, wife of His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, received the prestigious 2015 Giglio d’Oro Award on Friday, in a ceremony held in Florence, Italy.
The Giglio d’Oro is awarded annually by the Italy-based Galileo 2000 Foundation to individuals who make significant contributions to peace, music and art.
In her acceptance speech, Princess Haya paid tribute to Shaikh Mohammad: “The recipient should have been my husband… without his loving support and generosity, I would not have been able to do nearly so much.”
Princess Haya has been widely recognised for her contributions to global humanitarian causes. In her role as a UN Messenger of Peace, she is dedicated to helping raise global awareness of the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), including the eradication of extreme poverty and hunger. The chairwoman of the International Humanitarian City in Dubai, she is a former World Food Programme (WFP) Ambassador Against Hunger.
“Dubai and the UAE,” she said, “are at the forefront of the global humanitarian effort.
“Few people know this, but the UAE has moved into the number one position among the world’s donors, giving 1.2 percent of GNI (gross national income) every year to foreign aid in more than 100 countries — nearly $5 billion from a country of only 8 million people,” she said in her speech.
Princess Haya told the audience about Shaikh Mohammad’s recently established Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives, which will launch the largest and most comprehensive development programme in the Arab region.
“The [Al] Maktoum family realised early on that the future depended greatly on the people who passed through and stayed in Dubai; people who needed to feel that they were free to flourish and prosper without risk,” she added.
“We have the world represented in Dubai, and in many ways, I believe, Dubai is also a microcosm of the modern world,” she said.
Source: Gulf News