Dubai sports awards to focus on youth development

Applications are being accepted for Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum creative sports award

By Arnaud Dubus

BANGKOK (AA) - The Dubai Sport Council is continuing to accept applications for the Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum creative sports award, according to an official associated with the award.

Moaza Al Marri, the secretary-general of the award at the SportAccord convention in Thailand, said this year theme will be “Empowerment of Youth in Sports, the Architects of the Future”, which aims to “develop youth” and “prepare the next generation of athletes”.

The Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum creative sports award was created 10 years ago and has so far been given to 203 individuals, groups or institutions, at the local, regional and international levels.

The total prize money this year is equivalent to 7.5 million Emirati dirhams (approximately $2 million).

“We are proud to say that we are the first and only global award in creativity in sports. And that stems from the vision of the ruler of Dubai, His Highness Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

“He is an avowed sportsman. From that came the vision for this award,” Al Marri told Anadolu Agency.

The registration for applications opened on April 1 and will be closed on Aug. 31.

The announcement of the winners will be done next November and an award ceremony will be held on Jan. 9, 2019 in Dubai.

“The celebration will be really big. It is equivalent to the Oscars in the field of sports,” Al Marri said.

About this year’s theme, Al Marri said: “Youth needs a lot of attention. We wanted to bring special attention to them, but also brings attention from different entities. In the U.A.E., a lot of initiatives are done to develop youth.”

The Dubai Sports Council is coordinating closely with international sports institutions in order to promote sports.

“For instance, we have agreements with the international Paralympics committee and with the Association of the Summer Olympic International Federations [ASOIF],” Al Marri added.

Members of some of these organizations participate in the arbitration process for the awards.

The Creative Sports Award is being held under the patronage of Dubai Crown Prince Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who is also the chairman of the Dubai Sports Council.

Last year, the theme of the award was “Empowerment of Women in Sports”.

Examples of winners in previous years include personalities who had achievements in the field of the administration of sports as well as sportsmen, including Olympic champions.

Some organizations active in developing sports for communities were also rewarded. The awards are granted in three categories: individuals, groups and institutions.

The awards from the first two categories are given at the local and regional level, and the awards of the third category are given at the local, regional and international levels.

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