More than 10,000 people have been nominated for an Abu Dhabi Award, which recognises charitable actions.
More than 10,000 in running for awards
ABU DHABI// More than 10,000 people have been nominated for an Abu Dhabi Award, which recognises charitable actions by those living in the emirate, regardless of who they are or where they are from. Organisers said more people were nominated in 2008 than last year, when 9,500 were put forward. The total number of nominations received this year reached 42,536, compared to 34,294 last year. Many people were nominated multiple times.
Nominations poured in from the three corners of the emirate, including Abu Dhabi, Al Ain and Al Gharbia. Most were received over Eid al Fitr, traditionally a time for reconciliation and good cheer. During the one-month nomination period, which closed on Oct 5, thousands put forward the names of worthy people at public stands, by telephone, through a website or a page on the social networking website Facebook.
A judging committee made up of government officials will select the winners, who will be chosen based on their contributions to society and not on the number of votes they received. Maryam Amiri, from the organising committee, said: "We are pleased with the total number of nominations received, but even more delighted with the increase in how many different individuals were recognised." Nine people received prizes last year, including Farida Sidduiqi, a volunteer with the Red Crescent Society, Dr Frauke Heard-Bey, an author and expert on Abu Dhabi tribes, and Emad Mohammed Saad, an engineer and environmental activist.
Ten people received the awards in 2005, their first year, and 2006. This year's awards will be presented at a ceremony at the Emirates Palace hotel in December. Only winners and their families will attend the event, which will be televised by Abu Dhabi Al Oula and Abu Dhabi Emirates TV. firstname.lastname@example.org