The UAE Foreign Aid Coordination Office (FACO), the federal agency recently set up to support and coordinate UAE-based donor organizations that provide assistance for humanitarian activities and emergency relief worldwide, and Abu Dhabi University (ADU) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in Abu Dhabi today.
Held under the patronage of HH Sheikh Hamdan Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Ruler’s Representative in the Western Region of Abu Dhabi, the signing marks the beginning of cooperation between FACO and ADU in providing training to UAE-based donors that is designed to enhance organizations’ capabilities and strengthen the UAE’s collective humanitarian aid and development missions.
“The UAE is one of the world’s leading providers of humanitarian and international development aid,” said Hazza Al Qahtani, FACO Director General. “The Foreign Aid Coordination Office (FACO) was established to support the various programs and activities being carried out from the UAE to ensure the best delivery of foreign aid to those in need wherever they may be. To achieve this objective we need to build a strong knowledge base in the field and we believe this agreement with Abu Dhabi University is a major step in this direction.”
The MoU between FACO and ADU will focus on building research capabilities within the international development and humanitarian aid community, through applied research projects, policy guidance and counsel. Education and training will also be a major area of concentration, with the two organisations working together to design training programs and establish qualifications in the field.
“The nature and magnitude of emergencies is evolving with droughts, floods, fires, and diminishing agriculture production occurring with greater frequency. Developing nations are at the most risk since they also have to deal with the burdens of existing poverty, hunger and suffering,” Al Qahtani added. “As a result of the growing complexity of emergency and humanitarian crises, there is an increased demand for well educated and trained personnel to enter the field which we are confident this new partnership between FACO and ADU will address.”
His Excellency Ali Saeed Bin Harmal Al Dhaheri, Chairman of the Abu Dhabi University Executive Board, commented during the signing ceremony on the importance of collaboration between Abu Dhabi University and FACO. Al Dhaheri said: “Abu Dhabi University recognizes the need to open communication channels with institutions in the UAE such as FACO and support its initiatives and projects with the right academic expertise our academic institution has to offer.”
His Excellency also praised the establishment of FACO and the importance of this partnership in bringing together a team of eligible, experienced nationals from different segments of the humanitarian aid sector in the UAE, to help support FACO.
Al Dhaheri clarified the role ADU will play in explaining and promoting humanitarian work to their students by highlighting the UAE’s pioneering work in this field and its position as an important player in the global humanitarian community.
In addition, a number of collaborative projects will be considered, including the establishment of a documentation centre and a foreign aid library. To strengthen the UAE’s profile, knowledge base and network of contacts in the field, the two organizations have agreed to jointly participate in conferences and other events related to international development and humanitarian aid.
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