Some 1,850 children of frontline healthcare workers in the UAE have so far been granted full scholarships, enabling them to study for free starting this academic year until their high school graduation. Applications for this special initiative of the government are set to close on September 30.
With the programme called Hayyakum, the frontliners' kids will be given slots at public schools in the country and they won't have to pay tuition fees until they graduate high school. Laptops and transportation are also covered, securing the education of more than a thousand children of different nationalities.
Hayyakum was rolled out through a directive from His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces. Overseen by Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and Chairman of the Education and Human Resources Council, the programme was launched by the Ministry of Education in partnership with the Frontline Heroes Office.
The initiative aims not only to give the school kids access to quality education, but also to alleviate the financial stress faced by several healthcare professionals whenever the academic year starts. The scholarship ultimately aims to encourage these frontline heroes to stay longer in the UAE.
Sheikh Sultan bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, chairman of the Board of the Frontline Heroes Office, expressed his gratitude to the staff who have placed the health and safety of people across the UAE ahead of their own.
"Our frontline professionals are the true heroes of the UAE and we thank them from the bottom of our hearts. Their selfless service to their communities has helped us get through this difficult time and they are a shining example of the true values and culture of the UAE," Sheikh Sultan bin Tahnoon said.
"We at Frontline Heroes Office hope to provide the same level of support and compassion that those on the frontline have provided to millions of people across our nation. We wish their children every success as they embark upon a new school year and we look forward to watching them follow in their parents' footsteps to become outstanding members of society."
Hussain bin Ibrahim Al Hammadi, Minister of Education, said Hayyakum is a testament to the community solidarity in the country.
"The Ministry on Education seeks to directly provide educational support for the children of frontline healthcare professionals so they can continue their invaluable and noble work," Al Hammadi said.
Frontline Heroes Office was established in July this year to support the staff and professionals who work tirelessly on the front lines of emergencies and crises. It is mandated to look after their needs in partnership with government entities.
Hayyakum is the office's first collaborative project, launched in partnership with the Ministry of Education.
Earlier this month, it set up a comprehensive national database of over 80,000 frontline professionals and volunteers who are actively protecting the UAE and its residents in the fight against Covid-19.