Bridging the gap

Hend Al Rais, Co-founder of Project You, finds immense joy in giving back to the UAE



Published: Thu 22 Apr 2021, 7:48 PM

Last updated: Sun 25 Apr 2021, 9:54 PM

About me: I am Co-founder of Project You, an entity that came out of Expo 2020's University Innovation Programme that builds future-ready youth. We saw what we are learning today in schools and what we actually need in the real world as two different things. To solve this issue we have developed a curriculum that runs alongside a school in the UAE. Since 2018, more than 2,500 students have been a part of our programme. We have been lucky enough to have wired with governments, schools, startups, and major entities (locally and internationally) to make this programme a reality.

During my free time, I enjoy horse riding, football and volleyball. I also make sure that I enjoy my time with family and friends to recharge.

What this season means to me: The holy month of Ramadan to me is more of giving back. Usually, I would spend the whole month with my family at my grandmother's house (may her soul rest in peace). We would all have Iftar, pray, and enjoy our time together. We would play games such as carrom, charades, and so forth.

Favourite part of Ramadan: My favourite part of Ramadan is mainly the gatherings whether family or friends. As well as, giving back to people in need, whether food, money, clothing, etc. Doing these things really brings joy to me.

My favourite memories of Ramadan would be the sleepovers my cousins and I would have at one another's house or sometimes at my grandmother's, enjoying our late-night cooking and talks.

One of the memories I won't forget is when my cousins and I were children and when we were caught by our uncle drinking water while hiding in the kitchen.

I'm looking forward to more family time. As we have grown up, we have become busier due to work, so scheduling family time during the weekends is important. I also will be doing more self-reflection and self-care. I really love baking and cooking so I'm looking forward to that too.

Favourite food: I have many, but the main ones are my grandmother's Logaimat (an Emirati dessert) it's just perfectly made, Herees, Oreo cheesecake cupcakes.

Ramadan wishes: Wishing everyone and their families a happy Ramadan. I hope that with this holy month, many prayers are accepted, and many dreams do come true.


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