ABU DHABI, The UAE’s Golden Jubilee Committee and Federal Youth Authority today launched the ‘Early Dreamers’, an initiative that invites all citizens and residents of the UAE to share stories of the individuals who have helped - and continue to help - shape the nation over the years.

The initiative is being rolled out in phases, starting with the ‘Early Dreamers’ phase which will run from 25th April to 30th June 2021, and reflect on the stories of the individuals who have had an impact on the UAE’s first 50 years. Later editions of the initiative will focus on capturing the hopes and ambitions of current and future dreamers, as the country embarked on its journey towards the next 50 years.

Starting today, people across UAE society are encouraged to interview the ‘Early Dreamers’ in their families, and to record and share the stories of those individuals whose aspirations and diligence have helped build today’s UAE. Throughout the year, the stories of these ‘Early Dreamers’ will be shared and celebrated on the Year of the 50th digital channels, allowing communities across all seven emirates to honour their contributions. Stories will also serve as inspiration for the upcoming 50th National Day celebrations.

Commenting on the announcement, Shamma bint Suhail Faris Al Mazrui, Minister of State for Youth and member of the UAE Golden Jubilee Committee, said, "We are a nation of dreamers who do from the early dreamers who helped build our country from the ground up, to the dreamers of today who work tirelessly to build on that foundation, to the dreamers of tomorrow, like our youth, who will one day lead our country forward."

She added, "To celebrate the Year of the 50th, we want to hear from these dreamers. Through our Early Dreamers, we hope to give names and faces to the people whose ambitions have contributed to the UAE’s success story. These dreamers can be found in every household across the country. Hearing their stories will help us understand what it took to get to where we are today, and allow us to recognize and celebrate their contributions as we prepare for the future."

For his part, Saeed Al Nazari, Director-General of the Federal Youth Authority, said, "The ‘Early Dreamers’ initiative is an ideal opportunity for young people to get acquainted with the stories of those heroes who built this country and spearheaded its development. It is essential that young people play a part in telling these stories; it allows them to truly grasp all that has happened in the past 50 years, and motivates them to plan the next 50 years."

"Our objective is to create a written record of the thousands of stories from those who have witnessed the establishment of the UAE, lived through its successive stages of development and construction, and now enjoy the progress and prosperity we have achieved," he added. "These dreamers set the perfect example for our youth today, inspiring them to work hard and persevere to achieve our country’s development goals and its ambitions to be a leader in every sector."

"The Holy Month of Ramadan is an ideal opportunity to explore these stories," Al Nazari noted. "We invite young people in the UAE – of all nationalities, cultures and religions – to make the most of the time they spend with their families to learn the stories of the first ‘Dreamers’, and pass them on in a creative way that meets the standards set by the initiative’s comprehensive Participation Guide, which is available on its official website."

Members of the public are invited to submit their stories and supporting photographs or videos by visiting www.UAEyearof.ae. An ‘Early Dreamers’ toolkit designed to inspire, practical tips and a step-by-step guide on how to capture and share stories is also available for download on the website.

Earlier this year, President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan has declared 2021 as ‘The Year of the 50th’ to commemorate 50 years since the nation’s founding in 1971. The ‘Year of the 50th’ officially runs from 6th April 2021 to 31st March 2022 to coincide with the UAE’s hosting of Expo 2020.

Source: Emirates News Agency