The Big Heart Foundation to discuss impacts of refuge on Arab development at IGCF 2017

The Big Heart Foundation (TBHF) – a Sharjah-based humanitarian charity dedicated to helping refugees and people in need worldwide, will be hosting a special session titled “The Impacts of Conflicts and Asylum on Arab Development”, on the second day of the International Government Communication Forum (IGCF 2017).

The session, taking place at 2:00 pm, March 23, will address three main themes; the impact of conflicts on children’s education and the role of women in supporting the development process. The second theme highlights the role of civil institutions in countering the negative consequences of the crisis-ridden region in general, and finally, the role of Arab women in facing radical ideology and fanaticism which threaten women’s status and their economic and social achievements.

The themes involve several topics, foremost of which are: the role of non-profit volunteer organisations in supporting sustainable development in Arab countries and the extent of partnership between these organisations on regional and international arenas. Other topics include the official response to volunteer organisations in facilitating their missions and the logistical support from countries and civil society organisations working within their geographical scope. The session will highlight the role of women, particularly in the face of extremism and terrorism.

The session will see the participation of a group of experts, including Khalid Khalifa, Regional Representative of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in the GCC; Mariam Farag, Director of Corporate Social Responsibility at MBC Group; Peter Kostoris, Regional Director for the Norwegian Refugee Council in Jordan, and Tamara Saeb, Tamara Saeb, Head of Communication at Medicines Sans Fronteries (MSF), regional office-UAE. The session will be moderated by Houssam Chahine, Regional Private Sector Partnerships Manager, UNHCR., Lebanon .

Mariam Al Hammadi, Director of the Big Heart Foundation, said: “The International Government Communication Forums is one of the most important inter-governmental events in the region. It is a unique event held annually in Sharjah, where it brings together prominent officials, decision makers, thought leaders and experts from around the world to discuss the latest developments and most important topics on Arab, regional and international arenas, particularly those related to the comprehensive development and how to achieve it sustainably.”

“The session will focus particularly on the issue of refugee women and children due to their importance in communities. Women and children are often the worst affected by conflicts and wars. Experts will provide a number of proposed solutions and inspiring insights that ensure optimal ways of dealing with women and children and relieving their ongoing plight,” Al Hammadi added.

IGCF 2017 will bring together more than 2,500 high-profile local and international figures, experts, thought leaders, decision-makers, government officials, stakeholders and professionals in government communication from the region and greater world.

TBHF was officially launched by Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qassimi in June 2015 to coincide with World Refugee Day. It followed the decision issued by Her Highness to transform what was then The Big Heart Campaign into a global humanitarian foundation. The move was aimed at redoubling efforts to help people in need worldwide, with the new foundation adding significantly to the UAE’s rich portfolio and long record of humanitarian initiatives.