Dubai: ‘World stopped when I received life changing call,’ says single mum who won $1 million

I will now be able to secure my children’s future and provide them with quality education, Shabana Unni said


SM Ayaz Zakir

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Photos: Supplied
Photos: Supplied

Published: Wed 20 Dec 2023, 3:56 PM

Last updated: Wed 20 Dec 2023, 11:08 PM

"The world stopped for me when I learnt about being a millionaire," said Shabana Unni, an Indian expatriate and marketing professional at the Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi Foundation for Policy Research.

Shabana received the life-changing call while she was preparing to go to a movie with her kids. Her mother noticed the notification of Shabana's win, leaving the latter shocked.

“I checked the notification over a thousand times just to confirm it is me,” said Shabana.

“When I received that life-changing phone call from Idealz, it left me in shock and disbelief,” said Shabana.

Shabana's name was drawn as the winner of the One-Million-Dollar Union Day Grand Prize on December 2. The Idealz draw, in collaboration with Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE), presented Shabana with the massive cash prize.

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After being inspired by her mother's previous win of Dh1,000 with Idealz, Shabana decided to participate. “My mother encouraged me to participate and to never lose hope. Since my mother won, I have been participating for six months now,” said Shabana.

Shabana has shopped for products worth Dh1,500 in the draw until now. During her recent participation, she purchased products worth Dh100 during a special Idealz campaign, which automatically made her enter the draw.

She is a single parent and plans to secure her children's future and provide them with quality education. “I also intend to contribute to the community by giving away a part of my winnings to charity. I want to pursue my long-cherished business venture, which will finally materialise now,” she revealed.

While Shabana is a millionaire now, she said that her lifestyle remains unchanged. “I will always stay humble and thankful to the Almighty,” said Shabana.


Taking care of her whole family was tough for Shabana but she never let that weigh her down. “I feel relieved that I now have good means to support my family's needs with confidence,” said Shabana.

Grateful for the relief from the financial burden on her shoulders, she will continue with her job at the foundation, she said.

Shabana advises not to lose hope when faced with challenges. She encourages persistence through manifesting and praying. "Life's sudden changes can bring immense joy in the blink of an eye," said Shabana

Idealz is a unique shop-and-win platform that combines shopping and winning, giving customers an opportunity to win amazing prizes.


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