From left: Sultan Mohamed Al Shehhi, Saifee Rupawala, Rashid Mubarak Al Mansouri, Manea Al Ahbabi, Aisha Al Afifi, Wajib Al Khoori, George V. Itty and Yusuf Ghadiyali during their Ramadan Charity Campaign at Al Wahda Mall, Abu Dhabi. Image Credit: Abdul Rahman/Gulf News

Abu Dhabi: A campaign to reach out to the poor during the month of Ramadan through donations and the distribution of food and clothes was announced in Abu Dhabi, with the initiative looking to encourage the community to offer their support to those in need.

Now in its third year — ‘The Tree of Good Deeds’ campaign — is a joint programme organised by Grace Conservations, Natham Social Responsibility and the Emirates Red Crescent. As with previous years, the public can donate an amount of Dh10 or Dh20 by purchasing coupons shaped as leaves, which are then placed on the tree to symbolise its growth. This year’s tree has been placed in Al Wahda Mall.

“Today we are once again announcing this successful campaign, which is separated into several different parts. The first is to encourage people to distribute their food in parcels to the community, and the second is to encourage them to donate clothes and furniture, which will then be distributed to those who need them,” said Sultan Mohammad Al Shehi, director of Grace Conservations.

“All of the items that are donated will be handled by the Emirates Red Crescent who will ensure that the food, clothes and furniture will be go to the people who need them,” he added.

“The third part of the campaign is the direct donations people can make, they can either give Dh10 or Dh20. Once they buy the coupon, the leaf is placed on the tree, the goal is to have all of the tree’s branches filled with leaves by the end of Ramadan. In previous years, we managed to raise Dh200,000 through the donations, and so we are confident that we are going to be successful again this Ramadan because the community always wants to help in this month,” Al Shehi said.

Manea Al Ahbabi, chairman of Nahtam Social Responsibility, said the act of giving was in line with the principles and values espoused by Shaikh Zayed, adding that the campaign would be a fitting tribute in the Year of Zayed.

“The late Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan encouraged the people to donate and to participate in different kinds of community work, and so we are following in his footsteps with campaigns like this.

“Our wish is to make people happy during the month of Ramadan, and so we invite all members of the public to try and take part because it’s always a noble act when you do something to help someone else,” he added.

“It’s very easy for the public to take part as well, all they have to do is make a small donation of Dh10 or Dh20. Based on past campaigns, we believe we will raise a good amount of money by the end of the campaign. The money we raise during Ramadan will all be donated for programmes helping those in need,” he said.