La-Femme ( Nashwa Al Ruwaini ) – Nashwa Al Ruwaini, the Emirati entrepreneur was one of the winners of the Mother Teresa Memorial Award for Social Justice 2018. She was awarded for all her philanthropic efforts in revolutionizing the image of women in the Middle East as well as all her charitable activities that she has undertaken to improve the lives of women and children through her humanitarian organization-the Nashwa Foundation.
Al Ruwaini was granted the award in Mumbai India at a ceremony organized by the Harmony Foundation following a conference with the theme of ‘Protect Her Empower Her’ focused on the empowerment of the girl child where Al Ruwaini spoke about the role of lobbying for laws, society and technology in protecting and empowering young women-a cause Al Ruwaini is very dedicated to. She received the award from the great grandson of the legendary Mahatma Gandhi, Mr. Shri TusharArunGandi in the presence of His Excellency Mohamed Al Jalah Al Teneiji, the UAE Consul General in Mumbai and is the first Emirati woman to win this Award.
On the occasion, Nashwa Al Ruwaini said, “It is such a great honour to win this accolade that I am extremely proud of and that is very dear to my heart. This is especially the case as Mother Teresa is one of my favourite role models who I aspire to be just as charitable and because it serves as a reminder that I need to continue my philanthropic work which I find to be just as important as my professional career. I believe that it is my role and purpose to always give back to the community, especially to women and young girls so that they can lead healthy lives and not be subjected to any form of oppression or injustice and I will continue to work towards this goal especially in the Middle East.”
She also added that under the wise guidance of the UAE leadership, especially Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak also known as the ‘Mother of the Emirates,’ women are provided with all the necessary resources and systems allowing them to succeed, fulfil their goals and be an integral and significant part of the society and that she wished this was the case for all women and young girls in the region.
Former winners of the Mother Teresa Award for Social Justice include in 2016 His Highness Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation in the United Arab Emirates, Mahatir Mohamed, the Dalai Lama and Nobel Laureate Malala Yousafzai.
This year other awardees alongside Nashwa Al Ruwaini include the winners of the Nobel Peace Prize 2018 Nadia Murad, a Yazidi survivor and Denis Mukwege, a gynecologist who provides medical, legal, psychological and economic support to survivors of rape.