Abu Dhabi : They work in the shadows, providing the underlying support that allows their surrounding environment to function effectively.

In recognition of their tireless efforts, pupils at the Emirates National School for Boys conducted a ceremony to honour their custodial and support staff members, including janitors, cafeteria workers and security guards.

"It was a wonderful event. Pupils across all grades came together to stage this ceremony, which included short performances, speeches and gifts for over 40 employees," said Ahmad Al Bastaki, the school's principal.

Preparations began a month-and-a-half ago under the direction of Shaikh Zayed Bin Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the head of the school's Students' Council. The Grade 11 pupil is the son of General Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.

"This is the second year that the 12-member student council has arranged this event as a way to thank our support staff for all the work they do for the school," Al Bastaki said.

"They were hoping to have the ceremony on International Workers Day, which fell on May 1, but were unable to do so due to various circumstances."