Burj Khalifa’s "tallest donation box" to provide 1.2 million meals to families affected by Covid-19 pandemic
The Burj Khalifa, which stands 828 metres (2,717 feet) high, will be transformed into the "world's tallest donation box" as part of a campaign to provide 10 million meals to low-income people.
In a special Interview with Khaled AlShehhi, the Executive Director of Production and Digital Communication Sector at the Public Diplomacy Office in the UAE Ministry of Cabinet Affairs and the Future, he talks about the innovative initiative:
“At MBRGI (Mohammed Bin Rashid Global Initiative), sustainability and innovation lead our humanitarian initiatives and respond to the particular times we are executing the campaign in.”
“Innovation does not come within a day. It requires a lot of teamwork and passion from each and every member to put together a creative idea and refine it for execution.”
“Creativity also lies in simplicity of our ideas that encourage everyone to participate and spread the word. In a way, we raise awareness about critical issues in society and empower the public to make a difference in their communities through harnessing the power of digital platforms to encourage people to do good and spread positivity.”
What’s the ultimate focus of launching such campaigns besides of course helping those in need?
“We are focused on launching campaigns, like the World’s Tallest Donation Box, that is from everyone to everyone. People are always at the forefront of any campaign from the idea creation to the execution.”
“For the first time ever, Burj Khalifa has put up its lights for sale to support a humanitarian cause. The simple and innovative idea behind the World’s Tallest Donation Box allowed anyone from around the world to purchase lights, for as little as Dh10 each, to provide vital food aid to those directly or indirectly affected by the coronavirus outbreak.”
Al Shehhi stressed that the first-of-its-kind initiative demonstrated how simple acts of giving could bring hope to people’s lives.
“The initiative allowed donors to see the direct impact of their contributions through the lights they shine on the world’s tallest building, which symbolizes the rays of hope their acts of giving bring to people’s lives at this critical time.”
“We succeeded in showcasing our solidarity with people across the world through uniting all segments of the society to secure 1.2 million meals in just one week.”
When asked about the number of volunteers who helped to execute this project and make it happen, Al Shehhi said:
“The beauty of the World’s Tallest Donation Box is that our volunteers were the 9 million people living across the UAE who could donate with a click of a button and within the comfort of their own homes. In seconds, they would secure meals for those in need.
For the food distribution, the ’10 million meals’ campaign teams from MBRGI work with a large-scale logistical network of government entities, humanitarian and charity organizations and transport services to ensure food reaches beneficiaries across the country.
The food catering, preparing, packaging and distribution process involves thousands of volunteers on a daily basis who follow health and safety guidelines to provide food for laborers, low-income families and for those directly and indirectly affected by this global pandemic.
The food distribution mechanism involves many partnering entities, with assigned roles, to implement the campaign on ground effectively throughout the holy month of Ramadan. An average of 300,000 meals are distributed daily.
On the various verticals that MBRGI covers under its umbrella Al Shehhi responded:
Providing meals to vulnerable individuals and families who have lost their income or experienced financial reductions is a vital humanitarian because we have been dedicated to serve at this time. Ensuring access to education, healthcare and humanitarian aid and any type of humanitarian and developmental work that will help humanity overcome this crisis also top our list of priorities at this time.
There are over 30 entities and initiatives that work under MBRGI in large-scale dimensions and fields. Our work is classified under the five pillars of Humanitarian Aid & Relief, Healthcare & Disease Control, Spreading Education & Knowledge, Innovation & Entrepreneurship and Empowering Communities.
At MBRGI, we are primarily devoted to improving lives and supporting vulnerable and disadvantaged communities across the world, irrespective of color, race or religion. Our initiatives and entities focus on empowering people to drive positive change within their communities.
You can still get involved
Individuals and companies across the UAE can still make financial or in-kind donations to provide meals and food parcels to those affected by the Covid-19 pandemic through the ’10 million meals’ campaign.
Financial donations are received through the campaign’s website www.10millionmeals.ae, SMS or bank transfer with details listed online. In-kind donations are made through the call center 8004006.
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai, announced the launch of the ’10 million meals’ campaign earlier in April to provide food support to families and individuals affected by the Covid-19 pandemic that left many facing unemployment and income reductions. The campaign is led by his wife Her Highness Sheikha Hind bint Maktoum bin Juma Al Maktoum, Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of UAE Food Bank.