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Women of Substance: Restoring the balance

Rohma Sadaqat /Dubai
rohma@khaleejtimes.com Filed on November 19, 2018 | Last updated on November 19, 2018 at 05.48 am
Women of Substance: Restoring the balance

Malvika Varadan, Reem Al Marzouqi, Sheikha Dr Alia AlQassimi, Mariam Hassan AlMansoori, Dr Zulekha Daud, Nayla Al Khaja and Debbie Standford-Kristiansen at the Women of Substance Awards in Dubai.
(Photo by Neeraj Murali)

Mohammed Galadari, Director of Galadari Brothers Group, presenting the award to Muna Al Gurg, director of retail at Easa Saleh Al Gurg Group.
(Photo by Neeraj Murali)

Dr Mohamed Atef, business unit head for consumer in the Middle East at Galderma, handing over the award to content creator Alexandra Hirschi.
(Photo by Neeraj Murali)

Fatima Al Jaber, board member of Al Jaber Group, and Thuraya Hamad Al Zaabi, the UAE’s first female paralympian, at a panel discussion during the event.
(Photo by Neeraj Murali)

Khaleej Times, in association with Cetaphil, honours the women have led the pack from the front and have set glittering examples for others to follow

Women need to strike a healthy balance when it comes to looking after their own needs and looking after others' needs, be it in the family or at their workplace, said experts at the inaugural Women of Substance Awards 2018 held at The Address Dubai Marina last week.

Organised by Khaleej Times in association with Cetaphil, the awards celebrated the achievements of women across the UAE and their contributions to various industries. The event is part of the 'Women of Substance' initiative by Khaleej Times to honour and recognise the UAE's prominent women champions who have overcome challenges through determination, achieved remarkable success, and are willing to encourage women in the Middle East and across the world to follow their dreams.

"We are lucky to be in the UAE, where leaders have instituted strong policies and actively contributed to gender balance through women empowerment. Women continue to play a leading role in the development of the UAE, and contribute handsomely across all sectors of the economy," said Mohammed Galadari, Director of Galadari Brothers Group (GBG). GBG is the parent company of Khaleej Times, the media house behind the Women of Substance initiative.

"The UAE ranks No.1 in the world for gender balance in literacy rate, No. 1 for enrolment in secondary education, No.1 for enrollment in tertiary education and No.8 for wage equality. With the inaugural Women of Substance initiative, we at Khaleej Times are proud to have honoured some leading lights among a galaxy of the UAE's women stars. We hope to continue this initiative and strive to make it a much bigger affair in the years to come," Galadari added.

Speaking during a panel discussion at the event, Dr Zulekha Daud, founder and chairperson of Zulekha Healthcare Group, and Shaikha Dr Alia AlQassimi, the first Emirati gynecologist to become a senior member of the European Society of Aesthetic Gynecology, highlighted how women should learn to care for their physical and mental health.

"A woman has to balance herself, both when she is working and when she is at home. She should also learn to balance her emotions. However, this does not mean that she should ignore her needs. Emotionally, if you are satisfied with yourself then it will show in your work."

Drawing upon her own experience in the medical industry, Dr Daud also noted that no technology can replace the care that a woman in the hospital has to offer. "We know many of the patients that come in because we take the time to know them and listen to them. This helps us to give them the care that they need."

Shaikha Dr AlQassimi said that women tend to be giving by nature, be they mothers, daughters, or sisters. "However, we don't often look out for ourselves," she said.

"It is important for every woman to take care of her needs from time to time. I would recommend every woman to eat healthy, exercise regularly, and make time to look out for yourself. Also, the most important thing is that you should love yourself. Your mental health is as important as your physical health. It's a mindset and lifestyle. Start by loving yourself; it is not selfish to put yourself first. Take care of yourself first and then take care of others."

She also noted that there has been a growing shift in awareness towards better mental health practices.

"Doctors today realise that there is more to treating patients than just looking at what they are coming in with. You have to ask them about a lot more and educate them about what is ailing them. This goes beyond a physical injury. You have to ask about what is stressing them out, and what other problems have they been facing, if they have been sick lately."

Respect, she said, is also important, because doctors are in a position where they are responsible for the trust that the patient puts in them.

"They will talk to you about something that they might not have told anyone else, so it is important to keep that confidentiality."

- rohma@khaleejtimes.com  

"A woman has to look out for herself, not only when she is young, but also when she grows old. This is extremely important, especially for women when they reach their 40s," said Dr Daud.


Rohma Sadaqat

I am a reporter and sub-editor on the Business desk at Khaleej Times. I mainly cover and write articles on the UAE's retail, hospitality, travel, and tourism sectors.Originally from Lahore, I have been living in the UAE for more than 20 years. I graduated with a BA in Mass Communication, with a concentration in Journalism, and a double minor in History and International Studies from the American University of Sharjah.If you see me out and about on assignment in Dubai, feel free to stop me, say hello, and we can chat about the latest kitten videos on YouTube.

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