Dubai Women Establishment

Empowering Emirati women since 2006

  • By Noorhan Barakat, Staff Reporter
  • Published: 12:37 November 10, 2012
  • Gulf News

  • Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News Archives
  • Students in a classroom at the Islamic and Arabic Studies College in Dubai.


The Dubai Women Establishment (DWE) was formed in 2006 with a vision to help Emirati women rise to the top, as accomplished leaders in business, politics and in their roles as wives and mothers.

A UAE Government body, DWE aims to be recognised as a role model in achieving the active participation of women within the economy and society in the region.

The Establishment was founded by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and headed by Shaikha Manal Bint Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Wife of Shaikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and UAE Minister of Presidential Affairs.

She said of the organisation: “The ultimate goal and responsibility of Dubai Women Establishment is to nurture a competent generation of future women leaders by establishing the right infrastructure and platform to ensure and sustain the success and potential of UAE women.”

Since its launch, DWE has played an effective role in developing Emirati women leaders, enabling them to play a greater role within the UAE and on a global scale.

Currently, Emirati women work in sectors as diverse as civil aviation, security and justice, and hold prominent positions within the nation’s diplomatic corps and the business world.

In the past few years, Dubai Women Establishment has successfully organised and conducted programmes, interactive seminars, training sessions and forums aimed at encouraging more women to join the active workforce while simultaneously equipping them with the skills to fulfil their traditional duties as wives and mothers.

The Establishment strives to help and encourage Emirati women balance stimulating careers with a satisfying family life through the endorsement of appropriate gender-equality policies and initiatives, providing life-long opportunities for training and work and promoting greater participation of women in the economic and political sphere.

This includes acknowledgment of women in arts, sports, and leadership positions in their professional fields, as well as in the societal arena such as philanthropic and humanitarian acts, and politics.

This is done through extensive research to identify and quantify the status of women in the workforce of Dubai, as well as initiatives aimed at providing further development opportunities to women.

Some of the establishment’s achievements over the past year include the establishment of the Arab Women’s Leadership Forum in 2009, which aims to strengthen the role of women as community leaders and inspire future generations of women to actively participate in nation building.

This key forum offers participants opportunities to engage in a series of workshops, panel discussions and to network.

This year’s forum, which will run on November 19-20, is titled “Board Leadership and the case of diversity”.

The DWE also has a number of initiatives such as the UAE Women Leadership Program, which was launched in 2008.

The two-year programme was aimed at developing the talent and competencies of female Emirati Leaders and was done in collaboration with the Mohammad Bin Rashid Centre for Leadership Development (MBRCLD).

One of the activities of the UAE Women Leadership Program is the National Corporate Child Care Project (NCCP), which was also launched in 2008. The programme complements DWE’s mandate to support working mothers by providing them the convenience of a child care centre at their workplace.

This is in line with the UAE Cabinet Policy on Corporate Child Care Centre - Law (19) 2006, which makes it mandatory for establishing day care centres at every ministry, government authority, public establishment and government department.

The National Corporate Child Care Project aims to enhance the standard of child care at these centres, by incorporating global best practices in addition to traditional values.

The project also aims to create employment opportunities for Emirati women at the centres by empowering them through appropriate training and employment programmes.

The first Child Care Centre in a Dubai Government Department was opened at Dubai Customs in March 2009.

Since then, DWE has successfully supported the opening of several child care centres across other governmental departments, such as Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) and Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (Dewa).

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