Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid and Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed with the Flame of Hope Image Credit: Social media

Abu Dhabi: His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, on Sunday received the Special Olympics Flame of Hope.

They received the torch of the Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019 at the Presidential Place where the retreat of the people of determination was held yesterday.

Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid and Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed attended the retreat, which aims to enhance the integration and empowerment of people of determination.

The two leaders signed a document for the people of determination and announced 31 initiatives and a national programme aiming to mobilise efforts to fully integrate the determined people into the mainstream society and ensure their full empowerment. The initiatives cover eight tenets including sports, quality of life, education and employment, international representation, health, culture, services and media.

Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid said the UAE was founded on the principles of empowering people of determination, and has come a long way in the process of accelerating their integration into the society. “The UAE is pressing ahead with its plans for the empowerment of people of determination and create opportunities for them to be active members of the society and contribute greatly to the country’s journey of development.

“Mohammad Bin Zayed and I attended the sessions of the people of determination retreat and signed the people of determination document where we received the Flame of Hope in preparation for the Special Olympics World Games,” the Vice President said.

Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid added: “The retreat was held with the participation of people of determination themselves so that they can come out with ideas and initiatives that would implement by themselves. We and all relevant government institutions will provide them with full support.”

He said the people of determination will be supported with initiatives and legislation and policies that help them realise their big ambitions, thanks to their strong resolve and will.

Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed said: “Mohammad Bin Rashid and I took part in the People of Determination Retreat. Our mission is to mobilise a global effort to empower them. Building societies properly requires the contribution of all its members & they are an important segment. We wish them a bright future. “

“With great pride, Mohammad Bin Rashid and I today received the Special Olympics Flame of Hope torch. This international sporting event is being hosted by our nation, the land of peace, love and harmony,” he tweeted.

Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed said the organising of the Special Olympics represents an incentive for continued success in various fields. "We are confident that the Olympics Games will be an extraordinary event thanks to the people of determination’s strong will, resolve and high spirit.”

He added: "The World Games is more than just a global sporting event, it is an incentive for us to take more steps to integrate people of determination into our community, the region and the world at large. We are inspired by their high morale, willpower and persistence to achieve more success and accomplishments.”

Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed praised the immense efforts undertaken by the UAE Cabinet under the leadership of Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid to empower and integrate the determined people into the society.

The people of determination document states: “People of determination have a special place in the heart of our community fabric…. We learn from them determination, and inspire how to make impossible possible…We are proud of their achievements in the journey of development. The future of people of determination and increase their participation is a shared national responsibility. Today’s retreat is a message of empowerment and motivation for a better future that meets their aspirations.”