ABU DHABI // Speakers paid tribute last night to Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, the widow of the late Sheikh Zayed, founder of the nation. Last night's discussion at Abu Dhabi University was led by Ayesha Alawdhi, a presenter on Abu Dhabi TV. It featured Moza Saeed al Otaiba, a member of the board of trustees of the Family Development Foundation, which the sheikha founded; Maitha al Shamsi, chairman of the marriage fund; and Mohammed Ibrahim al Mansoori, general consultant for the Women's Union.
Mentioning Sheikha Fatima's influence on education, politics, social empowerment, health care and philanthropy, the speakers recounted their personal experiences with her. "She took time to tell women how important education was," Ms al Shamsi said. "She visited remote areas and spoke to families, convincing parents to send their daughters into schools. She made them see how women can also take up important positions and have an impact on society."
Furthe, Ms al Shamsi said, the sheikha empowered women. "This is why and how we have reached the situation we are in today." email@example.com