ABU DHABI // A competition offering youngsters a chance to help their community is receiving a surge of last-minute entries.
Musahamati (my contribution) is an Abu Dhabi-based awards initiative open to residents aged between 16 and 23.
It aims to encourage social responsibility and generate creative solutions to local problems.
The official launch was last month and the Musahamati team has been visiting schools and universities across Abu Dhabi, including the Masdar Institute, Zayed University and Al Mawahib High School.
Aida Mubarak Abdullah Al Shaer, a student at Zayed University, said: "I know from speaking to fellow students on campus that they are keen to contribute to Abu Dhabi.
"They all have lots of great ideas that can make a real difference to the capital of the UAE, and Musahamati is a perfect opportunity for their ideas to be heard."
Abdulla Al Shamsi, a student at the Masdar Institute, said: "Through my participation in Musahamati, under the healthy lifestyle category, I'm able to contribute to society by working on reducing the number of people at risk from obesity-related diseases."
Reeda Salman Alakbari, a pupil at Al Mawahib High School, said: "It's an important step in planting the seed in our minds, allowing us to think on a higher level as well as spread awareness."
Fatema Al Mulla, a member of the Musahamati organising team, said she had witnessed the excitement of young peoplekeen to give something back to the community.
With the February 23 deadline looming, she encouraged all those who have not yet entered the competition to do so.
Entries can be in English or Arabic and must be submitted by individuals or groups of up to five.
There are five categories: environmental preservation and awareness, culture and heritage, technology and innovation, healthy lifestyle and social responsibility.
Proposals will be judged on viability, sustainability, originality, research, cost-efficiency and adaptability to reproduction.
A shortlist will be announced next month, when a workshop will be held for those who made it past the first stage.
Those shortlisted will submit final presentations in April, and a winner will be announced in May.