Abu Dhabi: Swimming with dolphins, buying a laptop or an iphone, flying in a helicopter or going to Disney World are just a few of the wishes granted to children across the UAE suffering from life-threatening medical conditions.

Make-A-Wish-UAE (MAW-UAE) is a non-profit charitable organisation that has helped fulfil the wishes of 80 expatriate and Emirati children with terminal medical conditions since its establishment in 2004.

The MAW-UAE is the only branch available across the Arab world alongside other international affiliated MAW international branches that grant dreams of children aged three to 18 years, most of whom only have a few more years to live.

With the foundation's motto calling for support of their efforts in helping ill children, the MAW-UAE is coordinating with an upcoming art gallery.

The Opera Gallery houses 26 masterpieces, worth $30 million (Dh110 million), and 75 contemporary works.

Approximately five per cent of the gallery's sales and 15 per cent of the proceeds made from the gallery will go to the MAW-UAE's cause.

Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Bin Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, MAW-UAE board member, spoke during a press conference held yesterday about the importance of creating further awareness among the public regarding the foundation.

Human law

"I came back to the UAE a year ago to promote MAW-UAE. It means a lot to me to give back to the community and to help both expatriates and Emirati children living with life-threatening diseases. It's a very important cause for me, it's like a human law," he said, adding that the wishes of the majority of children, especially the younger ones, are mostly simple and innocent.

Get in touch

If you wish to volunteer, help and/or contact Make-A-Wish UAE, you may reach them at: www.makeawish.ae


- Opera Gallery initiative takes place from November 19-24 at the Emirates Palace Hotel.

- Masterpieces will include three impressionist painters, Monet, Renoir and Sisley, and artists from the 20th century such as Dufy, Picasso, Chagall, Dali, Miro, Dubuffet and some living masters such as Zao Wou-Ki, Botero, Georges Mathieu.

- Opera Gallery has 11 outlets across the world, with three new galleries which opened last year in Monaco, Geneva and Dubai.