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MBRGI’s Madrasa bags UNESCO International Literacy Prize

09 Sep, 2022

Madrasa, the Arabic e-learning platform available to more than 60 million students for free, has been awarded the UNESCO King Sejong Literacy Prize. The accolade was granted in recognition of its efforts to provide digital educational content in Arabic, free of charge, contributing to global efforts of mother-tongue literacy development.

The prize was presented to Dr. Waleed Al Ali, Advisor at Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives (MBRGI) and Director of Madrasa, and Farah Al Azab, Senior projects manager for MBRGI, during an awarding ceremony organised by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) in Abidjan, the economic capital of Ivory Coast.

This is the UAE’s first win of the prize, making it the only Arab nation to receive it in 2022, alongside notable laureate countries, including the United Kingdom and India being awarded the UNESCO King Sejong Literacy Prize, as well as Brazil, South Africa, and Malaysia being awarded the UNESCO Confucius Prize for Literacy.

Mohammad Abdullah Al Gergawi, Secretary-General of MBRGI, said, "Providing educational opportunities for all, in line with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, is a fruitful Emirati model that empowers future generations. It also contributes to instilling a culture of continued learning, and cultural and knowledge diversity, which accelerate the realisation of the Sustainable Development Goals 2030 and bring glory back to the region as a key contributor to humanity."

He highlighted that developing and launching innovative and sustainable humanitarian initiatives, especially in the spreading education and knowledge sector, is a continuous approach in the UAE. He noted that the approach is supported by the nation’s wise leadership and receives immense contributions from the UAE community as well as international partners, including UN organisations, among others, that are keen on enhancing the future of humanitarian work that empowers humankind.

Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, Minister of Culture and Youth, pointed out that Madrasa’s win, as a public Emirati Arabic platform for tens of millions of students, is a recognition of the UAE’s various educational and cultural programs and initiatives.

She reaffirmed that the UAE, under the directives of its wise leadership, will continue supporting programs that spread knowledge and enhance cultural awareness.

For his part, Salem Khalid Al Qasimi, the UAE Permanent Representative to UNESCO, said, "The UAE has contributed immensely to literacy, and it’s committed to executing and supporting initiatives that aim to develop educational and literacy tools and platforms that are available to anyone who wishes to learn.

He commended the efforts of MBRGI’s and Madrasa’s teams, who spared no effort in spreading knowledge and Arabic educational content. Through offering an innovative and pioneering digital curricula, they enhanced Arabic reading and writing skills across the globe.


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