WE HON­OUR OUR HE­ROES

Friday - - Editor’s Letter - Karen Pasquali Jones Edi­tor kpasqual­i­jones@gulfnews.com

From giv­ing up most of their SALARIES to run­ning MARATHONS, build­ing SCHOOLS and of­fer­ing help to ANY­ONE who needs it, th­ese UN­SUNG saviours are EX­TRA­OR­DI­NARY be­cause they’re or­di­nary

They’ve built schools from scratch in the re­motest of places, taught chil­dren in slums and given away the ma­jor­ity of their time and mea­gre salaries to of­fer some of the world’s poor­est chil­dren an ed­u­ca­tion. They’ve or­gan­ised fundrais­ers, climbed moun­tains and run marathons to raise money for bricks, books and bills. Who are th­ese self­less saviours? In­cred­i­bly, they are not gi­ant cor­po­ra­tions or global char­i­ties – though, of course, there are plenty that help those in need. No, th­ese un­sung he­roes live among us. They are mums, watch­men, teenagers, stu­dents and busi­ness­men and women.

They are ex­tra­or­di­nary be­cause they are or­di­nary. Th­ese men, women, groups and chil­dren liv­ing in the UAE de­vote ev­ery­thing they have – spare time, money and energy – to make a dif­fer­ence to hun­dreds of thou­sands all over the world. They’re there in the back­ground ed­u­cat­ing chil­dren, giv­ing ad­vice and shel­ter to vic­tims of crime, the dis­abled, the poor, the home­less – any­one who needs it.

Most im­por­tantly, they give us all hope and the needy a shot at a bet­ter life and fu­ture. They in­spire us all, and ask noth­ing in re­turn.

Now, Fri­day wants to hon­our th­ese amaz­ing peo­ple in our first Mak­ing A Dif­fer­ence Awards. In a glit­ter­ing cer­e­mony, we will be nam­ing the peo­ple who’ve changed oth­ers’ lives. They’ve given so much, it’s time they were recog­nised for their phil­an­thropic deeds. They’re an in­spi­ra­tion to us ev­ery week, and we hope they’ll in­spire you too. Turn to

page 38 to read the first of our short­lists’ sto­ries. We’re sure you’ll agree they’re all our he­roes.

Un­til next week,

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