Dubai: As the hype around Valentine’s Day builds up, it’s easy to peg a story about a young Dubai man launching an inspiring campaign in memory of his 26-year-old wife, who he lost to cancer last month.
But true love, Adam El Daba, 31, reminds you, is not a one-time, yearly pledge.
The Palm Jumeirah-based Egyptian entrepreneur, who has interests in IT, trading, real estate and restaurants, says he has discovered this the hard way. “We have no excuse not to be happy. I learned this too late, but you should not make the same mistake. I would do anything for a second chance.”
El Daba met his wife Noor Schebli, a German national of Iraqi origin, at a beach destination in Egypt in August 2015. They got engaged in April 2016 and married two months later. It was a fairytale romance, except that Noor had battled and beaten cancer three times over. She succumbed to the illness on December 5.
“But never ever did she make anyone around her feel she was sick. She only spread cheer and happiness wherever she went. She fought cancer with grace and dignity. If there was anything that hurt her, it was only when someone in need didn’t get help,” recollected El Daba.
He wishes he could have spent more time with Noor. But while that can never be, he cherishes every moment he had with her and is keen to spread her legacy of smiling through the odds and making others cheerful. His campaign, #GoBeTheLight, has a simple but powerful message: “Stop caring about how others judge you, drop your guard and go out of your way to recognise and appreciate your loved ones.”
Having received over 50,000 likes for its YouTube video on the first day, the campaign urges the public to upload videos of themselves expressing their love to a ‘significant other’. On March 31, the winner of a grand prize entailing a fully paid trip for two to an exotic beach location will be selected. In addition, there will be 25 giveaways from the online gifting platform joi.
joi saw in Noor a friend and colleague, as she was going to join its marketing team once she recovered.
“Unfortunately, that was not meant to be, and joi lost a member of its family. To honour her memory, our team created a floral arrangement to list on our platform and called it Noor Forever,” said joi’s founder Ritesh Tilani, adding Noor personified joi’s happiness goals.
El Daba is also helping a cancer hospital in Egypt to build five more rooms as Noor wanted to help cancer patients.
#GoBeTheLight for the people you care about, and show how much you love them.
Create a video of you expressing to a significant other, family member or friend how much you care about them. This could be a video of you sharing your affection or sense of care, singing a song, reading a poem, painting, drawing, graffiti, words drawn in the sand, even sharing old wedding photos/films with a narrative. Feel free to be as creative as you want.
The video should be at least 15 seconds long, but can be as long as you want it to be.
Post it to Facebook, Instagram or Twitter and make it public. Tag three friends to challenge them to #GoBeTheLight too. Make sure you include the hashtag in your post.
For more information about the initiative, email email@example.com or go to http://www.noorschebli.com