Emirates Foundation

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Emirates Foundation
مؤسسة الامارات
Emirates Foundation logo.jpg
Emirates Foundation for Youth Development
Formation 2005; 12 years ago (2005)
Purpose Public welfare
Headquarters Abu Dhabi
Region served
Official language
English / Arabic
Abdullah bin Zayed
Managing Director
Sultan bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan
Clare Woodcraft
Key people
Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Mohammed Hassan Omran
Affiliations Shell Foundation, OECD Development Center
Website www.emiratesfoundation.ae

Emirates Foundation is a philanthropic foundation set up by the Government of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi to facilitate public-private funded initiatives to improve the welfare of people across the UAE.

Over the past seven years Emirates Foundation has built a vibrant and diversified portfolio. It has helped over 28,000 young people to make positive contributions to their communities through the foundation’s programs and worked hand in hand with the private sector and in collaboration with public sector peers to deliver social value through philanthropy.


Emirates Foundation (EF) was launched in April 2005 as an initiative from General Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces. It is chaired by Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs. In 2012, Emirates Foundation was re-launched under the name “Emirates Foundation for Youth Development” as an integrated national initiative that seeks to invest in UAE youth. EF’s strategy uses the model of venture philanthropy to develop nationwide programs that aim to impact the lives of UAE youth positively and permanently in a manner that is measurable and sustainable.


The Foundation works in three key areas: social inclusion – looking at some of the challenges facing young people; community engagement – encouraging youth to participate in a voluntary capacity in the civil society; and leadership and empowerment – helping to build young people’s ‘soft skills and prepare them for the work place.

EF seeks to identify, educate and inform the public about some of the challenges facing UAE youth while identifying opportunities for growth and development for young people themselves. The foundation develops sustainable, enterprise-based solutions to social issues that help motivate and guide young Emiratis through programs that help them understand the value of giving back to society while developing their capabilities, confidence and leadership skills.

As part of its commitment to ensuring that collaborations are run as effectively as possible the Foundation creates space for critical reflection on youth issues and dialogue. Its Business Breakfast for Social Investment – launched in March - is a quarterly event that unifies sectors to discuss how best they can collaborate to support young people in the UAE.

Successful initiatives of Emirates Foundation to date include its Takatof volunteering programme, the Kafa’at initiative preparing youth for private sector employment and the SANID emergency relief volunteer program.


Emirates Foundation is an active member of the Arab Foundations Forum (AFF), the European Venture Philanthropy Association (EVPA) and the OECD’s global network of foundations, NetFWD. These platforms allow the organization to keep abreast of international best practice in the sector and to learn about some of the world’s most innovative approaches to philanthropy.





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