Stories of Hope

Pink Ribbon Crafters paint the town pink

Pink Ribbon Crafters paint the town pink

Pink Ribbon Crafters is a group of passionate volunteers and artisans who create handmade items from knitted toys, candles to jewellery sold in exchange for donations to support breast cancer research and patient treatment in the UAE. 100% of proceeds are donated to Al Jalila Foundation in partnership Brest Friends. The volunteers, many of whom are breast cancer survivors, work tirelessly throu...

Mother finds hope to fight breast cancer

Mother finds hope to fight breast cancer

When Melany (39) discovered she had breast cancer, like many others, she was completely overwhelmed by the diagnosis. As she sought the appropriate medical treatment she discovered she was pregnant and despite the disease she was overjoyed to welcome a new baby. Even as a strong young woman, the treatment plan would not be straight forward as she was now considered a ‘high risk pregnancy’ a...

Researching the effects water-pipe smoke on heart health

Researching the effects water-pipe smoke on heart health

Cardiovascular disease continues to be the leading cause of death and disability in the world today. According to the World Heart Federation 17.5 million people globally die every year from cardiovascular disease and studies have identified it is a one of the primary reasons of death in the UAE, with 30% of fatalities attributed to the disease. Professor Abderrahim Nemmar from United Arab Emira...

Little philanthropists and Math stars

Little philanthropists and Math stars

11-year-old Raghav Krishna and 8-year-old Madhav Krishna are two inspirational brothers living in Dubai who have a passion to make a difference in the lives of children of determination so they too can live life to the fullest and reach their full potential. These extraordinary siblings are champions in mental math calculations and prize winners at national and international competition levels ...

Baby Antheia’s smile is restored

Baby Antheia’s smile is restored

At birth, baby Antheia was diagnosed with a cleft lip but regardless of the abnormality, her parents were grateful that their daughter was otherwise in good health and did not require any medication. The doctor who handled the delivery had recommended that baby Antheia receive surgery at the age of 3 months but her parents were overwhelmed both by the cost of the surgery and the restrictions in...

Emirati women are the support of the nation

Emirati women are the support of the nation

Sheikh Zayed, the Founding Father of the UAE, was a strong advocate for women and believed that “the woman is half of the society” and should be empowered, respected and developed to contribute equally to the country’s success. Every year, Al Jalila Foundation joins the nation in celebrating Emirati Women’s Day recognising the accomplishments of women and honouring them for their contri...

Teachers breaking boundaries of inclusion

Teachers breaking boundaries of inclusion

Despite challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic we are very proud that the end of the 2020 academic year saw the graduation of the 6th cohort of Ta’alouf Teachers Training Program comprising of 73 teachers from 23 schools. Through Ta’alouf Teachers Training Program, in partnership with Zayed University, Al Jalila Foundation equips teachers from public and private schools with skills to broa...

Taking the first steps towards hope

Taking the first steps towards hope

By mid-January 2020, 3-year-old Wed had already been to what felt like hundreds of doctor’s appointments. She suffered from severe knee pain as a result of worsening genu varum (bilateral leg deformities or ‘bow legs’). After visiting Al Jalila Children’s Specialty Hospital, it was apparent that this condition was also affecting her mental health as much as the physical. Young Wed was s...

Researchers delve into diabetes and fasting

Researchers delve into diabetes and fasting

Data shows that 1 in 5 people in the UAE has diabetes making it one of the most pressing healthcare challenges today. Fasting as part of religious practice is keenly observed in the region and many people with diabetes fast throughout Ramadan with no negative impact on their health while some are considered high risk. Al Jalila Foundation grant recipients, Dr Fatheya Alawadi and Dr Mohammed Has...

Dubai runner on a charitable quest

Dubai runner on a charitable quest

Around the globe sport has proven to be one of the greatest charitable avenues with running holding a strong lead in charitable fundraising and participation. Although the global pandemic meant many running events were canceled, Dubai resident Ahmed Ali was not about to let that stop him supporting his favourite charity. Ahmed got creative and initiated the #Eid2EidChallenge to raise funds f...

Scholarship recipient determined to give back

Scholarship recipient determined to give back

When HedaietAllah Ghanem discovered she was selected to be one of the first to receive a full 6-year scholarship from Al Jalila Foundation to attend Mohammed Bin Rashid University of Medicine and Health Sciences (MBRU) she was speechless. Throughout high school she had explored many professions but nothing inspired her like medicine. The determination to pursue her dream had paid off and she was o...

Scientist files patent for novel chemotherapy treatment

Scientist files patent for novel chemotherapy treatment

UAE breast cancer statistics emphasise the need for local research as it is the most common cancer affecting women with incidences steadily increasing and constituting 38% of all female cancers in the country. Al Jalila Foundation research grant recipient, Dr Ghaleb Husseini from American University of Sharjah, lead a ground-breaking study focused on improving treatment methods for breast cance...

MonViso, a brand with a heart

MonViso, a brand with a heart

Stefano Iorini is no ordinary businessman but rather an entrepreneur passionate about philanthropy. With decades of commercial experience behind him, in 2015, Stefano launched MonViso Italian Mineral Water with a mission to develop a product that would give back every day. With a good cause at the heart of the brand Stefano established the ‘Take Water. Give Life’ initiative which donates AE...

Baby’s family grateful for a helping hand

Baby’s family grateful for a helping hand

A month after her birth it was apparent that baby Sarah had severe developmental delays and the doctors discovered that she was suffering with nephrotic syndrome, a rare kidney disease. Sarah’s parents were heartbroken when their daughter had to be admitted to hospital and it could take some time for her condition to improve. The doctors advised that Sarah required a long-term treatment pl...

Dubai runners donate miles for smiles

Dubai runners donate miles for smiles

Since inception, Al Jalila Foundation has encouraged thousands of motivated individuals and teams to raise funds by taking part in sports challenges. These endurance runs, triathlons, marathons and more have been instrumental to raising awareness and providing hope to patients suffering from chronic illnesses. Due to the COVID-19 global pandemic, sporting events around the country were cancelle...

Joy is restored for young heart patient

Joy is restored for young heart patient

Salim was born with a ventricular septal deformity, a hole in his heart, which caused developmental delays, fatigue when feeding, coughing and shortness of breath. Although, his parents faithfully followed his condition with the doctors in the hope that there would be an improvement, by the time he reached 5-months-old his symptoms began to deteriorate. He suffered from shortness of breath and due...

Hanah’s Gift of Hearing

Hanah’s Gift of Hearing

When 9-month-old Hanah contracted life threatening meningitis it left her with irreversible hearing loss. Hope was close by when her parents learned that the cutting edge cochlear implant would restore her hearing. However, at a large cost the transforming solution was out of their reach. Al Jalila Foundation stepped in to fund the procedure and young Hanah, now 7-years-old, is a confident, advent...

The power of hope for Palestinian boy

The power of hope for Palestinian boy

12-year-old Muayad Al Arjani was born with Osteogenesis Imperfecta, better known as ‘brittle bones disease’, and was unable to stand or walk without breaking bones in his legs. He was confined to a wheelchair throughout his childhood, unable to play with his friends or lead a normal life. Due to the lack of corrective treatment in Palestine life was a struggle for Muayad who was flown to Du...

Developing solutions to support mental health

Developing solutions to support mental health

During these uncertain times, mental health support has never been more vital and Al Jalila Foundation is proud to be at the forefront of pioneering research in the UAE by supporting scientists addressing the issue. Al Jalila Foundation research grant recipient, Professor Leontios Hadjileontiadis from Khalifa University, used cutting-edge technology to develop a first-of-its-kind mobile app ...

Fighting cancer with the help of friends

Fighting cancer with the help of friends

Roderick had always been an active healthy man when he uncharacteristically began to develop a persistent fever, sore throat and nausea that he wasn’t recovering from. Once he checked in to Dubai Hospital in July 2019 results revealed that he was suffering from acute myeloid leukemia and was in need of life-saving treatment. The doctors began chemotherapy immediately but Roderick discovered h...

Mother champions inclusion in the community

Mother champions inclusion in the community

Kareema, an Emirati mother, recently joined 100 parents of children with intellectual disabilities to graduate from the 19th cohort of Ta’alouf Parents Training Program, the biggest cohort to date held in Dubai. Her 18-year-old daughter, Huda, was born with physical and mental disabilities which has been a driving force behind Kareema’s commitment and passion to support people of determination...

An inspiring role model for women in science

An inspiring role model for women in science

Dr Habiba Alsafar, a two-time Al Jalila Foundation research grant recipient, was a curious youngster who dreamed of becoming a scientist. Encouraged by her parents, she pursued her scientific aspirations gaining her PhD in Forensics and Medical Sciences and fulfilled her dream to ‘build the UAE’s capability in genetic research’. Today, Dr Habiba is a faculty member at Khalifa University w...

Cancer patient plays football with heroes

Cancer patient plays football with heroes

7-year-old Mohammed suffered from headaches and vomiting for three months and after careful observation the MRI scans showed a large cystic mass in his brain and he was at risk of losing his vision. He underwent immediate surgery with success and the biopsy results revealed that it was a rare brain benign tumour (craniophyryngioma). Unfortunately, a year later, the scans showed residual tumour ...

Delivering results for students of determination

Delivering results for students of determination

Our Own English High School Fujairah took part in the 6th cohort of Al Jalila Foundation Ta’alouf Teachers Training program in partnership with Zayed University. The program trains educators to champion inclusivity within classrooms so students of determination can learn to their full potential. Since enrolling in the program, the team implemented several new inclusion initiatives at the scho...

Adam receives life-saving kidney transplant

Adam receives life-saving kidney transplant

Adam was diagnosed with renal dysplasia after birth which led to atrophy in both kidneys and severe deficiency in renal functions. He underwent dialysis for five years at his home in Ras Al Khaimah, before his condition deteriorated. At this point, his family took him to Al Jalila Children’s Specialty Hospital where Adam received hemodialysis with up to five hours of treatment three to four time...

Improving women’s health and happiness

Improving women’s health and happiness

According to World Health Organization depression affects 350 million people worldwide and is a leading cause of disability, affecting more women than men. In the Arab world, it is estimated that 17.7 percent of the population suffers from depression. With these alarming statistics, mental health is a top priority on the UAE National Agenda and a focus for Al Jalila Foundation research. One ...

Pursuing a career to save lives

Pursuing a career to save lives

Growing up in an underprivileged community, Farah Ennab was inspired to pursue medicine as a profession to make a difference in people’s lives. In 2016, based on excellent academic achievements, Farah was awarded an Al Jalila Foundation scholarship to follow her dream. Through the scholarship, Farah became the first person in her family to attend medical school and incidentally, was one of th...

Running toward a life of freedom

Running toward a life of freedom

Mohammed was diagnosed with Blount’s disease at a young age, a growth disorder characterised by lower limb deformity that slowly worsens over time. By the age of 11, the pain and deformity had become so severe that Mohammed was no longer able to stand, much less walk or play with his siblings causing a great deal of psychological distress along with the physical. Surgery was needed to get Moh...

Uncovering the sleep and weight loss connection

Uncovering the sleep and weight loss connection

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), more than 4.8 million people in the UAE suffer from obesity. These numbers underscore the need for long-term funding into scientific research to develop discoveries in the field of obesity. Al Jalila Foundation research grant recipient, Dr Teresa Arora from Zayed University, is conducting a pilot study to assess the feasibility of sleep improvem...

Guidance leads to empowerment

Guidance leads to empowerment

Mohammed Alraidi and his wife have long been the greatest supporters of their son who was born with Down syndrome. Always on the lookout for ways to improve their son’s reality and life experiences, they came across Ta’alouf, Al Jalila Foundation’s flagship program that equips parents with the best possible tools to nurture children of determination. Enrolling in Ta’alouf Parents Traini...

Knocking on the door of hope

Knocking on the door of hope

It was the beginning of summer 2019 when 6-year-old Vinit Vasandani was devastatingly diagnosed with acute blood cancer (leukemia). The specialists at Dubai Hospital began treatment immediately. However, the family’s medical insurance had reached its annual limit by August. More funds were needed to complete Vinit’s medical plan and his father, Anil, was steadfast in his commitment to provide ...

Exploring the mysteries of disease

Exploring the mysteries of disease

Dr Bashair Mussa from University of Sharjah (College of Medicine) is a cutting-edge researcher leading a study, with the support of Al Jalila Foundation seed grant, investigating the role of FOS and BECLIN1-inducing autophagy in pathogenesis of hypoglycemia-associated autonomic failure (HAAF) in diabetes. HAAF is a serious complication of diabetes which is associated with unawareness of hypogly...

Walking into a new beginning

Walking into a new beginning

Callum was born with an abnormality of his left leg that requires an ortho-prosthesis to enable him to walk and move around independently which must be consistently refitted as he grows. Callum’s parents have always endeavoured to do everything they can to make sure their son is completely mobile enjoying an active life like other young children. By the age of 6, Callum had already been fi...

Emirati doctor inspires students

Emirati doctor inspires students

As a promising Emirati student, Dr Mohamed Jamal dreamt of becoming a dentist and leading ground-breaking research to improve lives. His journey began at Ajman University where he gained a Doctorate of Dental Surgery in 2005; he then continued to Boston University Institute for Dental Research and Education in Dubai where he obtained a CAGS and MSD in Endodontics in 2011 and received recognitio...

Early detection saves lives

Early detection saves lives

It had been less than a year since Dubai resident, Sirine Fadoul, had done her annual wellness check which included a breast ultrasound when she detected a very small lump. As a young, healthy and fit woman with no history of the disease in her family, nothing suggested cancer but she took action and went to get checked quickly. To her shock, the doctor confirmed that she had stage one breast c...

Zain is given a chance at life

Zain is given a chance at life

Still in his mother’s womb doctors detected a serious problem with Zain’s growing heart. Zain’s parents anticipated his welcome with a mixture of joy and anxiety unsure of what lay ahead as there was no choice but to wait until his arrival to discover how severe the situation was. Unfortunately, upon his birth it was confirmed that Zain had a congenital heart defect, Tetralogy of Fallot, ...

Scientist studies the effect of carnosol on breast cancer

Scientist studies the effect of carnosol on breast cancer

Celebrated scientist and Al Jalila Foundation research grant recipient, Professor Rabah Iratni from United Arab Emirates University, is studying a naturally occurring polyphenol, carnosol, and its effect on breast cancer. Breast cancer ranks as the leading cause of cancer death in women worldwide with triple-negative breast cancers (TNBCs) being the most aggressive and invasive form with the wo...

Dr Saba, a leading woman in science

Dr Saba, a leading woman in science

Worldwide, lung cancer is a leading cause of cancer mortality in both men and women and in the UAE it is ranked the second deadliest disease among UAE nationals. Al Jalila Foundation research grant recipient, Dr Saba Al Heialy, Assistant Professor of Immunology at Mohammed Bin Rashid University of Medicine and Health Sciences, is a brilliant researcher who aims to identify genes involved in sev...

Aya pursues a career in medicine

Aya pursues a career in medicine

Aya Akhras’ lifelong dream was to help people and while excelling at biology in high school she set her sights on becoming a doctor. Thanks to her exceptional academic record, in 2016, Aya gained admission to the Mohammed Bin Rashid University of Medicine and Healthcare Sciences (MBRU) College of Medicine to pursue a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) with a scholarship from Al ...

Khalid’s determination inspires the nation

Khalid’s determination inspires the nation

Khalid Al Ali is a young Emirati man with an enchanting smile and a strong will. The 26-year-old athlete – an international swimmer and a member of the UAE National Swim Team – has a long list of hobbies that include horseback riding, sailing and kayaking. He has also participated in international sports championships in several countries including representing the UAE in kayaking in the Sp...

A difficult journey ends with a smile

A difficult journey ends with a smile

The first smile of Bana Nizar Hassan, a nine-year-old Sudanese girl, after her surgery at Al Jalila Children’s Specialty Hospital, is a moment her father will never forget. Since birth, Bana has suffered from a complete failure of her left kidney and atrophy of her right kidney – a condition that affects one in 1,000 children. Bana spent the first years of her life enduring all kinds of t...

Saffron key in cancer treatment

Saffron key in cancer treatment

According to the World Health Organization cancer is the second leading cause of death globally and researches around the world continue to search for a cure. Al Jalila Foundation research grant recipient, Professor Amr Amin from United Arab Emirates University, has been conducting a study since 2011 and found saffron to have anti-liver cancer properties working both to stop cell division and prom...

Scholarship recipient serves the nation

Scholarship recipient serves the nation

Dr Anas Al Salami is 1 of 4 outstanding Al Jalila Foundation Scholarship recipients to graduate as part of the 'Class of 2018' from Mohammed Bin Rashid University of Medicine and Healthcare Sciences (MBRU). In addition to earning a Masters of Paediatric Dentistry from MBRU, Dr Anas received the prestigious 'Young Healthcare Professional Award' by Dubai Healthcare City Authority. Dr Anas’ childho...

Marwa’s heart is filled with promise

Marwa’s heart is filled with promise

Marwa, 21, had undergone a heart transplant in Germany where she stayed for more than 3 years after surgery to receive essential post-operative care. Upon returning to the UAE it was vital, as part of the treatment plan for a post heart transplant, she continue to do regular follow-ups, catheter and heart biopsy, to check if there is a rejection of the new heart. Lack of medical insurance po...

Mohammed runs forward with hope

Mohammed runs forward with hope

Mohammed Ayoub was one of our first A’awen patients, he was the face of 7EmiratesRun and the inspiration for Al Jalila Foundation's iMcan program which provides prothesis to those in need. 6-year-old Mohammed was born with severe congenital limb deformities and over the years we have watched Mohammed blossom from a shy toddler into a confident young boy. He has since joined #TeamAlJalila at m...

Research tackles world's greatest disease

Research tackles world's greatest disease

According to the World Health Organisation, cardiovascular diseases are the number one cause of death globally and it is estimated that 30% of fatalities in the UAE are attributed to cardiovascular disease. While improvements in lifestyle can support successful treatment there is much research to be done to provide better treatment options. Dr Maria Baias, Al Jalila Foundation grant recipient f...