Dubai billionaire calls for fund to support mothers, says willing to contribute up to Dh100 million

Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor hails the role of mothers in the upbringing of UAE’s future generation


Waheed Abbas

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Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor and others at the Open Talk session. — Photo: Supplied
Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor and others at the Open Talk session. — Photo: Supplied

Published: Fri 17 May 2024, 6:00 AM

Last updated: Sun 19 May 2024, 8:35 PM

A Dubai billionaire has suggested establishing a fund to support mothers in the UAE considering their critical role in the upbringing of the future generation.

Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor, founding chairman of Al Habtoor Group, said on Thursday that he would contribute up to Dh100 million to the fund.

“A mother is the most important person in the family and the UAE Government has introduced various programmes to support mothers’ needs. This land is dear to our hearts. We are responsible for supporting UAE mothers. I would like to suggest setting up a fund for the purpose and urge affluent people to support the fund. I can contribute Dh25 million to Dh100 million,” Al Habtoor said during the 'Open Talk with Khalaf Al Habtoor' at his company’s head office.

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He suggested that mothers should prioritise looking after the kids when they’re very young. Both parents, he added, are crucial to raising children — and they need to protect them from the dangers that this modern era brings.

Al Habtoor is a well-known philanthropist. This month, he offered “psychological and physical treatment to children who were sexually abused” through a social media app in Lebanon. He said he was willing to provide all the support that these youngsters need.

During the record rains that hit the UAE on April 16, Al Habtoor announced financial support of Dh17 million to repair Emirati homes that were damaged. He also provided hotel rooms to shelter rain-affected families.

He had also previously provided support to 100 female Afghan students in Dubai after the Taliban-run government prohibited them from attending universities in their home country.

Speaking at the Open Talk, Dr Ahmed bin Abdulaziz Al Haddad, grand mufti at the Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities Department in Dubai, said “great men are raised by great women”.

“We should not leave kids to babysitters because this will have harmful effects. Priority for mothers is to pay all attention to their kids," Al Haddad said.

Col Abdulrahman Sharaf Almamari, director of Hemaya International Centre at the General Department of Anti-Narcotics at Dubai Police, strongly advised parents to pay heed to children whenever they want to discuss something.

Col Almamari revealed that some people in the UAE use the Internet for more than seven hours a day, which is excessive and dangerous. “Instead, they should spend time with their kids. If we don't pay attention, that could mislead the children and they would be vulnerable,” he warned.

Dr Abdulkhaleq Abdulla, a professor of political science, said he was confident that today's youth would "lead the society to a safe future".

“When asked to responsibly carry out a task, they can do their jobs well at all levels. We trust our young people and the UAE is in safe hands ... We hope our society will be the best at all levels,” he said.


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