Princess Ameerah, keynote speaker at 3rd Arab Women Leadership Forum in Dubai
- United Arab Emirates: Sunday, November 25 - 2012 at 15:40
- PRESS RELEASE
HH Princess Ameerah Al-Taweel, Vice Chairwoman and Secretary General of Alwaleed Bin Talal Foundations that is chaired by HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz Alsaud, delivered a keynote speech at The 3rd Arab Women Leadership Forum, that was held at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE) in the presence of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai and Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince.
Her Highness delivered a keynote speech during the opening ceremony and started by telling the story of Ms. Hanan, who asked for a divorce because she was a victim of her husband's abuse.
She left her house and took her son and went back to her family's' house. Then Ms. Hanan felt she was a burden to her family. She enrolled in an English and computer course and found a job within the government. She paid off her home loan, and she is currently training other women to be independent, and when I asked her why she came back, she said it was time for her to empower others.
Princess Ameerah commented, "Women's empowerment is not about slogans. It is one of the most important, sensitive and arduous development projects. Our presence here today is a clear and strong expression of our success. Today we are sending a tough message to everyone that Arab women are coming, to contribute to social recovery, take part in political and economic development and be involved."
Her Highness added, "We are here today to assert that the leadership role of women is above all a legitimate right granted to us by our religion. We are here today to assert that women are part of society. And society needs women. Men and women are partners in this project and together they will achieve comprehensive development. The first beneficiaries of women's empowerment are men."
Princess Ameerah acknowledged the initiative of HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid towards women's empowerment not only in his work place, but started from his home. Princess Ameerah, said, "We can see his support to women leaders among his family members in all fields, one of them being Sheikha Manal, who gathered us here today, so thank you for being a model and believing wholeheartedly in women's empowerment."
She concludes her speech by noting that "The challenge we are facing today is a clash between backwardness and civilization, between the past and the future, reactionism and development. "Our role is to banish the stereotype that women are less competent and less capable than men."
Also during the event, HE Ms. Mona Al Marri, Chairperson, Dubai Women Establishment gave a speech on behalf of Sheikha Manal Bint Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, President of Dubai Women Establishment, saying that the presence of Sheikh Mohammed honoured the forum, adding that the forum is the fruit of his vision and his appreciation of the important role of the UAE women.
The event was also attended by Ms. Najla Tarabzouni, Communications and Media Manager at Alwaleed Foundation and Mrs. Amal Algarafi, Office Manager of Vice Chairwoman.
As Vice-Chairwoman and Secretary General and Head of the Executive Committee of the Alwaleed Bin Talal Foundation in Saudi Arabia and the Alwaleed Bin Talal Foundation -Global, Princess Ameerah supports a wide range of humanitarian interests in both Saudi Arabia and around the world. The Foundation is an international, non-profit organization dedicated to supporting programmes and projects aimed at poverty alleviation, disaster relief, interfaith dialogue and, perhaps most importantly at this time in our history, women's empowerment.
Most recently, Princess Ameerah inaugurated the new Department of Islamic Art at the Musée du Louvre in Paris with Prince Alwaleed in the presence of President François Hollande to which Alwaleed Foundation donated $20m in 2005. This historic gift to the Louvre is the largest made by the Foundation and represents its ongoing commitment to the preservation of Islamic heritage and the promotion of global cultural understanding.
Princess Ameerah has spoken out publicly in the US on NBC's Today, CNN International and NPR, as well as in Time magazine and Foreign Policy Magazine in support of both women's right to drive in her country of Saudi Arabia and the broader issue of women's civil rights to contribute fully in Saudi society.
She has been featured in Newsweek, The Daily Beast, Huffington Post and was interviewed by Piers Morgan. As member of the Clinton Global Initiative, She spoke in a special session at the 2011 Clinton Global Initiative, entitled, Voices for Change in the Middle East & North Africa, in which she discussed her views on the current movements for change in the region with President Clinton.
And this year, Princess Ameerah participated again at the CGI 2012 in a panel titled 'Communication by Design: Inspirational Change Agents" that was moderated by Piers Morgan and was aired on Piers Morgan Tonight on CNN. Her self-described approach to reform is one of "evolution not revolution' and it is this positive and determined perspective that defines her view of the future of her country.
Princess Ameerah is a magna cum laude graduate of New Haven University with a degree in Business Administration. She is also a member of the Board of Trustees of Silatech, an international youth employment organization with a focus on youth empowerment in the Arab world through the creation of jobs and greater economic opportunities, and by working to find new and innovative approaches to the challenge of unemployment in the region. She is an honorary member of the Disabled Children's Association.
Being an honorary board member of the Saudi Volunteering Society, she established Tasami Centre, an umbrella for volunteering groups providing them with the legal, social and financial tools and skills to ensure that these groups can fulfill their full potential. One of those volunteering groups that was established by Princess Ameerah is 'Smile Group', catering for supporting unfortunate children of the Saudi Society, in orphanages, hospital wards and disability centers in support of her vocal advocacy about her views and engagement with youth in the region and getting them involved in their local community.
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