People in the UAE and across the world can now donate to secure meals for vulnerable communities in 50 countries as part of a massive Ramadan food drive.
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai, officially launched “One Billion Meals” campaign on Saturday, the first day of holy month of Ramadan.
In a tweet, the Dubai ruler called the campaign “one billion noble messages from the UAE to the world.”
“Ramadan is the month of fasting where we feel the agony of 800 million people who sleep hungry every day,” Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid said in a tweet.
Individuals and companies from all over the world can donate as little as Dh1 ($0.27) to secure one meal for the disadvantaged.
The campaign, dubbed as the region’s biggest food distribution drive, will provide food parcels to secure the total of one billion meals to low-income families and refugees.
Organised by Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives (MBRGI), the campaign is an expansion of the UAE’s previous "100 Million Meals" launched during Ramadan last year.
It raised more than double its target, securing food parcels, equivalent to 220 million meals, to the disadvantaged in 47 countries across four continents.
The donated 220 million meals are still being distributed in the form of food parcels across underserved communities and refugee camps in collaboration with the UN World Food Programme (WFP), the Food Banking Regional Network (FBRN), United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Humanitarian and Charity Establishment (MBRCH) and humanitarian organizations in targeted countries.
With the “One Billion Meals” campaign, distribution is set to continue this year until the remaining 780 million meals are secured.
His Excellency Mohammad Al Gergawi, Secretary General of MBRGI, said the campaign is part of the UAE’s quest to enhance the quality of life worldwide, preserve humanity and alleviate the suffering in needy communities.
“Innovative humanitarian initiatives such as One Billion Meals strengthen the UAE’s status as an impactful contributor to international efforts to face humanitarian challenges. The UAE, in line with the directives of its wise leadership, is taking a unique approach to elevate charitable and humanitarian work, and has been able to achieve a qualitative leap in improving relief aid.”
Hunger claims a child’s life every 10 seconds in a world where 25,000 people die of hunger daily, of them 10,000 children. Over 800 million people are undernourished globally, including 52 million of whom, majority women and children, live in the Middle East and North Africa.
In a statement, the organizers said that 'One Billion Meals' campaign responds to the global need of providing uninterrupted humanitarian aid to underserved communities across the world, supporting efforts to achieve the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 2 that aims to end hunger by 2030.
Every Dh1 provides one meal. Donations to the campaign can be made via four channels:
> Online on www.1billionmeals.ae
> A bank transfer to Emirates NBD bank account with IBAN no AE300260001015333439802.
> SMS by sending the word “Meal” to 1110 for Etisalat or 1020 for Du) to donate Dh1 every day (Dh30/month)
> Toll free number 8004999 for big donations
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