Launching of the Centennial Initiative by the National Archives
In Celebration of the Year of Zayed, and in compliance with the directives of the UAE President, the National Archives is launching the Centennial initiative to honor Zayed’s values and achievements. On this occasion, His Excellency Hamad Abdulrahman Al Midfa, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the National Archives, remarked as follows:
“This initiative of the National Archives is being launched pursuant to decrees issued by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai and His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and Their Highnesses the members of the Federation Supreme Council, Rulers of the Emirates, regarding implementation of the directives of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed, and in deference to the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs. His Excellency pointed out that this national initiative sheds light on important pages of Zayed’s history and values for the new generations to look at and appreciate. It presents the achievements of the exceptional leader who spared no effort to build a prosperous state whose people enjoy progress and prosperity.”
The Centennial initiative will include four themes designed to consolidate the values incorporated into the slogan of the Year of Zayed, namely, respect, wisdom, building people and sustainability. These themes will be mirrored in the messages of the initiative that we look forward to get across to all segments of the public nationwide.
In the first theme, the objectives of the initiative focus on emphasizing the founding leader’s appreciation and due regard for all nationalities and the members of society at large. This caring attitude has earned the UAE a global reputation for upholding rights, equality and justice and made it an ideal place for social coexistence.
The second theme highlights wisdom. Sheikh Zayed was described as the Wise Man of the Arabs. His national, pan-Arab and international attitudes reflect his vision and wisdom in tackling issues and events, beginning with the stages of the Union formation all the way to momentous events that took place in the Gulf region and other parts of the Arab world. The third theme throws into sharp relief Zayed’s keenness on building the people, as they are the future makers. He focused his efforts on education, health, community and sports, and safeguarded all such achievements by building a defense force and a strong army. Thus, he placed the future of this homeland in the hands of its citizens who have shown they are capable of building it and rising up to the challenges. The last theme, sustainability, is highlighted in the Centennial initiative by the outstanding cultural and humanitarian heritage that the late Sheikh Zayed has left behind, which benefits the present generation and will be a guide for future generations. The founding leader had drawn a clear road map, carrying out solid national projects for a strong unified state that is capable of taking adversity and challenges in its stride, capitalizing on a successful development process based on a robust and sustainable foundation.
In a similar vein, His Excellency Dr. Abdulla Mohammed Alraisi, Director General of the National Archives, commented as follows on the national Centennial initiative during this Year of Zayed: “No matter how big the initiatives that shed light on the unique personality of Sheikh Zayed and his endless giving may be, and no matter how numerous its related projects are, they will be too little for such a great leader who unified our people and founded a nation on a durable basis. He worked hard on building the people and honing their skills, because he firmly believed in the importance of human capital in the development process as well as in safeguarding the achievements of the homeland and its renaissance.
His Excellency added that the National Archives has made sure that the projects of the Centennial initiative will comply with the National Archives mission, vision and objectives. These projects will promote Zayed’s values and perpetuate his accomplishments in the eyes of all members of society and the generations for whom the National Archives is keen to share in civic education. At the same time, these projects stand underscore that the founding leader was a farsighted visionary. This is evidenced by his directives to establish the National Archives in order to preserve the memory of the nation, and document the biographies and achievements of the UAE founding fathers and leading personalities, which are bright spots and proud moments in the history of our nation.
The Director General added: “As part of the Centennial initiative, the National Archives will design 100 educational games closely related to the history of the nation builder and founding father Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan. This idea stems from the fact that the National Archives has used games as an educational tool, and apprised the present generations of the glorious deeds of their ancestors. The National Archives makes sure that these smart and innovative games will transfer knowledge to the children and enable them to appreciate national and historical information. The National Archives will make its applications available for free downloading for 100 days in order to provide its audience from different educational, governmental and community agencies with national knowledge.
His Excellency noted that the initiative will also include “organizing 100 photo exhibitions that capture the efforts of the founding leader in building the United Arab Emirates. These exhibitions will be a window through which the members of the public can view some aspects of the Sheikh Zayed’s feats. The National Archives will prepare 100 postcards with 100 different photos documenting aspects of Sheikh Zayed’s efforts at home and abroad in his triumphant journey of construction and development, building bridges and strengthening ties with brotherly and friendly nations. To commemorate this occasion, the National Archives will prepare 100 high-quality glossy photo albums to document Sheikh Zayed’s humanitarian activities and his enduring patriotic stands.
His Excellency Dr. Alraisi went on to say: “The Centennial initiative for the Year of Zayed will not be limited to the aforementioned, but will also include 100 letters of thanks from 100 sheikhs, ministers, community members and employees who will express their gratitude to Sheikh Zayed for dedicating his life to building the homeland and developing its citizens. National Archives and government staff members will participate in this initiative, which will further include 100 films about Sheikh Zayed’s life. The duration of each film will be one minute and will be uploaded on social media channels and YouTube.
The National Archives will give away a collection of its publications to 100 school libraries nationwide for disseminating national knowledge and presenting a true and documented picture of UAE history and heritage, its founding leader and his brothers, the founding fathers. In collaboration with the Welfare and Activities Section, Ministry of Education, the National Archives will launch Zayed in 100 Tales. This event will be part of the project of the Student Historians Club that aims at instilling national and moral values in the hearts and minds of our young generations, encouraging them to read and write. The winners will be honored at the Abu Dhabi Book Fair.
The Centennial initiative will dedicate categories in the Young Historian award to the Year of Zayed, and the winning research papers will be published. The initiative will compile a collection of 100 quotes by the founding leader to be posted on social media. Moreover, it will include the preparation of school murals containing such quotes. The initiative will also provide 100 documents about Sheikh Zayed that will be published on social media. In addition to the projects of the Centennial initiative, and with the aim of spreading its benefits and providing an opportunity world-wide to learn about Sheikh Zayed’s inspirational life, dedication, achievements and success, the National Archives will translate some of its publications about the founding leader into a number of languages, including French, Spanish, Chinese and Urdu. The National Archives will incorporate the logo of the Year of Zayed into its official letters, e-mails, official website and intranet.