Sharjah Media Corporation Donates AED3 Million for The Big Heart Foundation to Build a Hospital for Rohingya Refugees

100-bed hospital facility to provide access to quality healthcare services
at refugee camp with a population of 140,000

For immediate release
Sharjah, May, 2018

Sharjah Media Corporation (SMC),through its public fundraising initiative on healthcare projects, has donated AED 3 million to The Big Heart Foundation (TBHF) – a Sharjah-based humanitarian charity dedicated to helping refugees and people in need worldwide –to build a hospital in the Cox’s Bazardistrict of Bangladesh for Rohingya refugees.

Within the first year, thehospital is expected to receive 7,200 inpatients and provide access to quality healthcare for thousands more from the district, which is populated by140,000Rohingya refugees – 19.4 percent of whomare children under five years of age.

The hospital is built in partnership with Médecins Sans Frontières(Doctors without Borders) to increase current capacitiesof responding to the overwhelming health needs of camp residents. The medical facility contributes to monitoring communicable diseases as well as providing 24-hourservices at the emergency departments, intensive care units, pediatric wards, maternity wards, isolation wards, and laboratories.

The hospital comes at apertinent time for the refugees as the aftermath of the Bangladesh monsoon season leaves a wake of destruction in its path. Heavy rain and landslides are reportedly causing deaths and injuries already and increasing risks of disease outbreak and aid disruptions.

The hospital providesintensive control systems and mobile clinics that help to strengthen the prevention of communicable diseases and uplift response rates, as well as assess health conditions that require hospital admission for prolonged stays.

There is a focus on providing healthy nutrition and primary care for refugees, including sexual and reproductive health, improving drainage and sanitation systems, improving access to quality healthcare for mothers and children by providing emergency obstetric and neonatal care, and services for victims of sexualabuse and violence against children and adults.

The hospital features 100 beds, and provides comprehensive healthcare for all patients with serious medical conditions that require emergency care.

Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qassimi, wife of His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah, Chairperson of The Big Heart Foundation and UNHCR Eminent Advocate for Refugee Children, said the institutional cooperation to achieve the goals of the foundation exemplifies Sharjah’s integrated vision and reflects the understanding of its development and humanitarian role.

“Helping members of any society, whetherat home or abroad, is key to the work of government institutions in Sharjah, spreading positive effects on everyone involvedand reflecting the UAE’s principles of giving to others,” Sheikha Jawaher said.

She added: “Civilised communities must be able to interact and communicate with one another and stand by the needy, vulnerable and sick.Sharjah Media Corporation’s support forTBHF’s humanitarian efforts, aspirations and goals reinforces Sharjah’s vision and shows the commitment of government institutions and its impact. We truly need such honourable models and combined efforts to provide refugees with hope for a better tomorrow.”

Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed Al Qasimi, Chairman of Sharjah Media Council and Special TBHF Humanitarian Envoy, said: “The donation by Sharjah Media Corporation aligns with the humanitarian and social duty called for by His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member Ruler of Sharjah. It also realises the vision of his wife, Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher to reach topeople in need and help them wherever they are and whatever their circumstances.”

He added: “The donation mirrors Sharjah Media Corporation’s support ofTBHF’s efforts in assisting refugees anddisplaced people as victims of conflicts, wars, inequality and natural disasters.”

Mohammed Hassan Khalaf, Director General of Sharjah Media Corporation, said: “The corporation puts social responsibility asa leading priority, under the directives of His Highness Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah.”

“Apart from media programmes and initiatives spearheaded by the corporation, it also joins hands and collaborates with humanitarian charity organisations,such as The Big Heart Foundation,dedicated to helping refugees. This form of cooperation doubles the impact of the work that goes towards helpingpeople most in need and follows our AED 3 million donation to TBHF clinic for Syrian refugees in the Zaatari Camp last year.”

He added: “We have a global humanitarian duty towards refugees and this donation is simply a contribution by the corporation to meet that duty. We hope other public and private institutions in Sharjah and the rest of the UAE will lead by the example set by the corporation and follow suit.”

Khalaf explained that while individual contributions are invaluable in many ways, they cannot achieve the results of collective efforts, especially with thegrowing number of refugeesinneed ofhealthcareas well as emotionaland psychological support.

Mariam Al Hammadi, Director of TBHF, said: “The donation is a big step in supporting a large number of Rohingya refugees who are going through a real human tragedy on a daily basis due to scarcity of food and lack of medical supplies, among other essentials. As individuals and institutions, we all have a responsibility to stand by them and work to our full potential to help them overcome these conditions and live a safe and dignified life.”

Al Hammadireferred to the visit by a delegation that she was part of to Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh whichhelped to improve conditions and provide basic essentials. Al Hammadi said: “The visit reflects the true meaning of human solidarity and demonstrates the strong ties that bind government institutions in the emirate of Sharjah when it comes to charity and giving.”

Médecins Sans Frontièresis running the hospital after obtaining the necessary permits from local and regional authorities. Other international and local bodiesare present and involved in the provision of healthcare services, such as the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, the World Health Organisation,the International Organisation for Migration and BRAC, an international development organisation based in Bangladesh dedicated to alleviating poverty by empowering the poor.

The Big Heart Foundation(TBHF) is a humanitarian charitythat was established in May 2015 after a range of humanitarian initiatives and campaigns launched by Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qassimi, Chairperson of The TBHF.

TBHF aims to provide protection for children in need and their families. Although the foundation concentrates its efforts in the Arab world, it provides support to affected areas worldwide.

Sharjah Media Corporation (SMC), a government organisation dedicated to developing the media industry in the Emirate of Sharjah, was established by Emiri Decree No.25 of 2009.

SMC aims to develop national media cadres capable of keeping abreast with requirements for development by utilising the best expertise and successful experience of public and private media institutions in coordination with relevant bodies.

It has under its umbrella Sharjah TV, Sharjah Sports Channel, Al Sharqiya from Kalba, Al Wousta from Al Dhaid, Sharjah Channel 2, Sharjah Radio, Quran Radio, Pulse 95 and Sharjah Media Training Centre.