16 November 2023
Nahyan bin Zayed awards winners of 7th Fatima Bint Mubarak Women Sports Award
His Highness Sheikh Nahyan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Charitable and Humanitarian Foundation and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Sports Council, has congratulated and awarded the winners of the seventh edition of the Fatima Bint Mubarak Women Sports Award, which took place at the Emirates Palace Hotel in Abu Dhabi.
The accolade celebrates women’s sports in the Arab world and, since its inception, has embodied the vision of Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, President of the General Women’s Union, President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation (FDF), and Mother of the Nation, to enhance the status of UAE National and Arab sportswomen in various regional and international forums, and competitions.
The ceremony was also held in the presence of Her Excellency Dr Maitha bint Salem Al Shamsi, Minister of State, Noura Al Kaabi, Minister of State, His Excellency Mohamed Thani Al Rumaithi, Vice Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Sports Council (ADSC), His Excellency Aref Al Awani, General-Secretary of ADSC, Her Excellency Noura Al Suwaidi, General-Secretary of the General Women’s Union and President of the Emirates Federation for Women's Sports, members of the arbitration committee, a number of Arab sports officials and sports stars, as well as local and Arab media.
His Highness Sheikh Nahyan bin Zayed Al Nahyan said: “The Fatima Bint Mubarak Women Sports Award has reached its seventh year, in light of continuous and increasing successes due to the support it provides to Arab women’s sports and their motivation to achieve more. It supports the efforts of Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Mother of the Nation, who continuously works towards enhancing the role of women and building on the gains achieved in recent years in this context.
“The prestigious award works to honour creative and accomplished women in Arab sports, and motivates everyone to excel, to reach the podium. It plays a great role that will continue to develop and reach higher levels from year to year, as well as strengthening the women’s empowerment strategy supported by the state. The UAE has all the resources to preserve the gains and sustain the achievements.
“We are proud of the important role played by the Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy in promoting the process of women’s empowerment, and we are pleased with the close cooperation of the Abu Dhabi Sports Council with the academy, which contributes to more effective partnerships that serve and provide all the success factors for women’s sports.”
His Highness Sheikh Nahyan bin Zayed Al Nahyan praised the successes achieved by the Fatima Bint Mubarak Women Sports Award, thanks to the guidance and support of Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak. His Highness considered the awards to be a qualitative leap in the progression of Arab women’s sports.
His Highness also paid tribute to the support and interest of Sheikha Fatima bint Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairwoman of the Board of Directors of the Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy, which enhanced the award’s standing in the Arab world and its good reputation in honouring champions and winners in various sports.
His Highness congratulated the winners of the award in its various categories and commended their accomplishments, wishing them further success, brilliance, and more determination and ambition to achieve successive victories in local, Arab, regional and international forums.
His Highness Sheikh Nahyan bin Zayed Al Nahyan honoured Her Excellency Noura Al Suwaidi with the Sports Personality of the Year award in recognition of her efforts and initiatives to support and encourage women's sports, and in honour of her contributions to the strategy of empowering women and enhancing their role in various areas of life, including the sports sector.
His Highness Sheikh Nahyan bin Zayed Al Nahyan also presented the award for the Best Arab Women Athlete to the world Taekwondo champion, Juliana Fouad from Jordan. She had topped the world Taekwondo classification in the 67kg weight category at the beginning of 2023 and came in second in the Olympic classification, becoming the first Arab woman to occupy first place internationally in the sport. Additionally, she earned a silver medal in the World Championship in Azerbaijan.
UAE National Chess Team player Rouda Alserkal was also awarded for Best Emirati Women Athlete by His Highness Sheikh Nahyan bin Zayed Al Nahyan. The Best Emirati Women Athlete recognises the performances at the regional and Asian levels, culminating in her silver medal at Asian Chess 2022.
Zaafarana Ahmed Al Hosani, mother of Special Olympics champions in athletics and bowling, Hamda and Maryam Al Hosani, with the Best Sports Mother Award were also presented by His Highness Sheikh Nahyan bin Zayed Al Nahyan. The awards were created by the organising committee in recognition of the role of mothers in their daughters’ sports careers, supporting them and motivating them to be creative.
Fatma Omar, a member of the Egyptian Paralympic weightlifting team, received the Best Paralympic Athlete award, in recognition of her achievements as a Paralympic weightlifting champion and the only woman in the world to have won six Olympic medals in a row. She also earned eight gold medals in the recent African Open Championships.
Tunisian Sanaa Al Mirdassi, coach of the UAE women's cycling team, won the Best Coach award for leading the women of her team to many professional achievements.
In the Best Sports Media category, Egyptian Amira Gamal won the award for her successes and excellence in the field of sports media, particularly supporting women’s sports, while the Fujairah Martial Arts Club won Best Team. The club’s players won gold and silver medals while participating in the ranks of the UAE National team in the World Combat Games in Riyadh, won the 2023 Excellence Shield from the UAE Fencing Federation, and received the Best Arab Club award in March 2022.
UAE Jiu-Jitsu national team player Mariam Al Ali won the Best Youth Athlete award for her outstanding efforts in winning several medals with the Jiu-Jitsu national team for young women and men, while the Dubai Police General Headquarters earned the Best Sports Creative Initiative award.
The event concluded with a special honouring of Sheikha Fatima bint Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan , Chairwoman of the Board of Directors of the Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy, and President of the Abu Dhabi and Al Ain Women’s Clubs, for her continued support of women’s sports and her contribution to enhancing the status of women in society. Her efforts towards the success of the Fatima Bint Mubarak Women Sports Award earned her a special commendation, which was received on her behalf by Dr Omniyat Al Hajri, Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy.
Sheikha Fatima bint Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan said: “The inspiring vision of Her Highness Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak, President of the General Women’s Union, President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation, Mother of the Nation, motivated women to be creative in sports, and gave them the opportunity and incentive to prove their worth and achieve the highest levels of excellence and success.”
Sheikha Fatima bint Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan further emphasised that the support and continuous attention given by the Mother of the Nation to the path of women’s sports has resulted in tremendous and important achievements, and thanks to these efforts, UAE National and Arab women have succeeded in becoming role models who embody ambition, determination and will, demonstrating their abilities and skills in consolidating their sporting positions and climbing podiums in various tournaments.
Sheikha Fatima bint Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan said: “Today, we celebrate the winners of the seventh edition of the Fatima Bint Mubarak Women Sports Award, an award that bears a name dear to everyone’s hearts, and is a translation of the strategy of the Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy, aimed at promoting and developing women and consolidating their position in the sports sector, especially since sports enjoy a high status. It is important in women’s lives, and we are proud that the Award has become the most important in the Arab world as a whole, as it highlights women’s achievements in sports, seeks to improve participation, enhance competitiveness and excellence, and create a stimulating and supportive environment for women athletes, to advance them to the highest levels.”
Sheikha Fatima bint Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan thanked the Abu Dhabi Sports Council, praising the effective partnership with the council headed by His Highness Sheikh Nahyan Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, in supporting the ambitious vision to make Abu Dhabi a global sports capital, paying attention to women’s sports, and inspiring and supporting promising generations of girls and women. In order for more girls and women to practice sports and follow an ideal lifestyle, which brings positive energy to their health, the Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy is keen to foster effective partnerships with sports institutions locally and internationally to benefit from development programmes and expertise.
Sheikha Fatima bint Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan also thanked the judging committee and its members, from the Arab and international sports elites, to the sponsors, strategic partners and supporters of the award, the Abu Dhabi Public Health Centre (ADPHC), Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC), Dolphin Energy, and the Abu Dhabi Sports Channel, praising all the working committees and those in charge of the award for their roles in supporting its success.
Sheikha Fatima bint Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan emphasized that the Fatima bint Mubarak Women Sports Award has become a celebration of UAE National and Arab sportswomen, and the best honor for creative women who have made gains in local, regional and international forums. Throughout the year, the award is a manifestation of their ability to reach podiums in competitive fields, as well as an incentive to redouble their efforts to shine more in various sports competitions.
Sheikha Fatima bint Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan also thanked and appreciated Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, for her generous patronage and support that helped the award gain the prestigious status it currently enjoys. She affirmed that Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak has been recognized in local and Arab women’s sports circles, and her tireless efforts have contributed to the advancement of women’s sports.