Every year, the Ministry of Health and Prevention launches several health initiatives, programmes and campaigns aimed at enhancing children’s health awareness, promoting healthy lifestyles in addition to raising children in a healthy, safe and supportive environment. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: The Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHAP) today launched a media campaign across its social media platforms to mark Emirati Children’s Day (March 15), this year’s theme being children’s “right to health”.

Also on Tuesday celebrating the occassion, His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, tweeted: "Caring for future generations remains a core value of the UAE, as it is the first step in building a strong nation. On Emirati Children’s Day, we reaffirm our commitment to protecting children’s rights and nurturing our young people."

Through the campaign, the ministry seeks to highlight the necessity of paying utmost attention to Emirati children when developing all health initiatives and programs to support the UAE’s comprehensive and integrated efforts in this respect, protect children’s rights and develop future generations capable of leading the country to new heights of growth and excellence.

The UAE’s celebration of Emirati Children’s Day reflects the country’s commitment to providing the best health care services for children, including people of determination to ensure their proper physical, mental and psychological development. The annual occasion, which falls on March 15 of every year, provides an ideal opportunity to raise community awareness of children’s rights, including the right to health, to support their abilities, skills and talents, in line with UAE’s strategic aspirations for the next 50.

Every year, the Ministry of Health and Prevention launches several health initiatives, programmes and campaigns aimed at enhancing children’s health awareness, promoting healthy lifestyles in addition to raising children in a healthy, safe and supportive environment filled with positivity and happiness.

WED Forum

Meanwhile, the World Early Childhood Development (WED) Forum hosted a special two-day event on the developmental years of early childhood in Abu Dhabi.

The WED Movement, established by Abu Dhabi’s Early Childhood Authority (ECA), is holding the event in partnership with Mubadala which is being attended by 250 world-leading policy influencers, academics, practitioners and innovators from multiple sectors.

The forum, themed around ‘Connections’, is exploring how purposeful connections are the bedrock of community, the support network that enables every child to be healthy, confident, curious, able to learn, and develop strong values in a safe and family-friendly environment.

Over 50 speakers from the Early Childhood Development (ECD) sector are holding discussions and deliberations across 14 globally trending ECD topics. This is being done with the aim to inspire members of the Early Childhood Development (ECD) ecosystem to become active change-makers. In addition to identifying prevailing concepts and behaviours and launching effective and meaningful dialogues about the development of young children.

WED Forum, serving as a ‘glocal’ knowledge platform, is focusing on key challenges identified in the WED Movement’s main themes – Tech Humanity for Children, 21st Century Lifestyle, Emotional Wellbeing and Social Interactions. It will reveal solutions that the team has arrived to over 110 sessions, highlighting Abu Dhabi’s evolving role as an innovation hub in ECD, as well as help set in motion impactful outputs to pressing challenges faced locally and globally.

Commenting on the modules, Dr Michael Rich, Group Leader for the Tech Humanity for Children Breakthrough Working Group (BWG) said, “I’m thrilled that the day has finally come, where we bring together incredible minds, as we navigate through the learnings and outputs of our extraordinary teams.”

Drivers of change

Dr Hossam Tatari, member of the 21st Century Lifestyle Breakthrough Working Group (BWG), said, “We are uniquely positioned to support Abu Dhabi in driving extraordinary change in ECD locally and globally.”

Dr Suha Al Hassan, Associate Professor, Special Education - Applied Behaviour Analysis, and Group Member of the Emotional Wellbeing and Social Interaction Breakthrough Working Group (BWG), said, “In its first-edition, this forum intends to grow credibility in this space, through exploration, collaboration and conversation. My team and I strongly mirror ECA’s Vision 2035, in working towards ensuring every young child is provided the best possible opportunity to be healthy, confident, curious, and able to learn and develop strong values in a safe, family-friendly environment, here in Abu Dhabi and beyond.

Safety first

Dubai Civil Defence celebrated the occasion with children at Poland Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai to raise awareness on children’s right to a healthy, safe and supportive environment for their development.

Firefighter Salem, a fireman mascot, and other firefighters explained to children what to do in case of a fire emergency, to raise their safety awareness.

Dubai Civil Defence with children at Expo on Emirati Children's Day 2022
Firemen and children took part in fire safety awareness activities during the occassion Image Credit: Supplied

Major Dr Ahmed Al Shanqiti, Director of the Government Communication Department at Dubai Civil Defence, said presents were also given to youngsters visiting the mega-event.

“Celebrating the special day for Emirati children is part of the UAE’s strategy to look after youngsters who will have a vital role in the future. Raising the awareness of children about fire safety and hazards will shape their characters in the future,” added Maj Al Shanqiti.