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Thursday, April 18, 2024

UAE: Shy Boy to Volunteer Leader Transformation

Shy as a teenager, Hasan Al Ali’s life took a transformative turn when his sister encouraged him to join a volunteering effort. Despite his initial hesitance, Ali’s first step into volunteering set him on an unwavering path.

Now 32, Ali leads the Emirates Foundation’s Takatof program, crafting projects that instill a culture of lifelong volunteering. Once introverted, Ali’s journey began when his sister introduced him to a triathlon challenge as a marshal.

This experience pushed him to communicate, coordinate, and embrace responsibility.

From that pivotal moment, Ali’s volunteering journey flourished. It became a source of skill development, forging relationships, and learning new abilities.

The benefits he reaped included improved communication, leadership, problem-solving, and time management skills.

Ali’s passion for volunteering is undeniable, with his phone buzzing incessantly as volunteers reach out for opportunities.

The Takatof program, launched in 2007, continues to unite citizens and expatriates in varied initiatives like cleanups, donation drives, and events for underprivileged individuals.

With around 600,000 volunteers from diverse backgrounds and age groups, the program thrives on community engagement.

The volunteering spirit extends across the UAE, from teens to a 72-year-old participant. Enthusiasts can easily sign up through the official website, choosing from a range of initiatives that reflect the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan’s inspiring ethos.

Ali’s journey demonstrates the transformative power of volunteering, turning a shy teenager into a dedicated advocate for community service.

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