ABOUT US

Who we are

Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts is the most comprehensive organization in the UAE to empower underprivileged women through sustainable crafts. In 2006, Her Highness Sheikha Shamsa bint Hamdan Al Nahyan, the Emirates Red Crescent President’s Assistant for Women’s Affairs, set out to provide women with training, designs, raw materials, and marketing services to create culturally inspired products to assist them in earning a dignified living and sustain traditional crafts. Boasting more than 200 craftswomen, from different nationalities and ages, Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts has multiple product lines such as corporate gifts, stationery, home accessories, and fashion.

Our Vision

To be the leading entity to empower underprivileged women in the UAE through sustainable crafts

Our Mission

To empower women in our community by providing them with resources that enable them to produce culturally inspired products to secure a good living

Our Values

Inclusion
We are one family, and have a strong sense of belonging. We respect and value each and every woman in our community, and provide endless support and commitment to one another to succeed

Creativity
We are all creative and innovative beings. We are uniquely talented, but together, we have the power to create beautiful craftsmanship that can truly preserve local crafts and echo the country’s heritage

Empowerment
We are curious women. We are smart women. We are brave women. Everyday, we are crafting our way to a better world, with each skill we learn, and each product we sell


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Services & Products

Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts offers various services and products to empower women through crafts and promote Emirati crafts. First, we provide training on Emirati crafts such as Sadu, Telli, Khoos, wool spinning, pottery, sewing, henna, and others for the community at our workshop and other locations. Complementary training is provided to underprivileged women who are registered at Al Ghadeer to enable them to produce product which we sell for them through our online store, our location, government entities and private companies, and shopping centers, and tourist locations. The craftswomen directly benefit from the sales which raises their living standard. We also provide training to the wider community for the next generation to adopt to sustain Emirati crafts and make them contemporary. Second, we supply locally handmade Emirati products that are suitable for residents and tourists. Our various products are of high quality and authentic design. Third, for occasions and events we provide Emirati crafts’ demonstrations where views are captivated and engaged in the intricate and beautiful crafts being made live. Fourth, we send out our #GhadeerAlKhair trolley to government entities and shopping centers in the UAE to raise awareness of the importance of empowering women in the UAE through crafts and preserving Emirati crafts.

About HH Sheikha Shamsa bint Hamdan Al Nahyan

HH Sheikha Shamsa Bint Hamdan Bin Mohammad Al Nahyan, wife of HH Sheikh Hamdan Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Ruler’s Representative in Al Dhafra Region and Chairman of the Red Crescent Authority earned a Bachelor‘s Degree in Law and Sharia from UAE University. Her Highness holds many posts, including Vice President of the Red Crescent for Women’s Affairs; President of Women & Health Alliance International (WAHA); Chairman of the Higher Committee for the Ataya Project; Honorary President of Abu Dhabi Autism Centre; Honorary President of the Emirates Autism Society, President of Women and Society Committee inAl Dhafra Region and Patron of the educational programs at the Abu Dhabi Music & Arts Foundation.

“I am proud of our craftswomen and the quality of their products that are handmade in the UAE. More than a decade has passed of equipping hundreds of women in the UAE with crafts and confidence to produce handmade pieces that are sold to finance their ambitions. Join me in taking our mission of women empowerment through crafts to another level”

HH Sheikha Shamsa bint Hamdan Al Nahyan
Founder of Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts

Governance

Under the Federal Law No. (9) of 2002, the Emirates Red Crescent was established. Article 5 provides for the establishment of charitable projects and attention to the social issues of widows, orphans, the elderly and people with special needs. Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts was created in 2006 under the umbrella of the Emirates Red Crescent as an initiative of Her Highness Sheikha Shamsa bint Hamdan Al Nahyan, the Assistant President of the Emirates Red Crescent for Women's Affairs to support women with limited incomes in the UAE.

Our Story

Women all over the world are supporting themselves and their families with their crafts as a form of economic empowerment. Skills and knowledge, instead of formal education, play a fundamental role in the economic growth and social development for these women. In the United Arab Emirates, we truly believe in serving our community and ensuring that we are positively impacting the lives of underprivileged women in the UAE. We create opportunities for talented women to acquire skills that can help improve their lives and raise their standard of living. We also preserve traditional crafts and local culture through the production of high quality, handmade contemporary products that are authentically Emirati.

Under the visionary leadership of Her Highness Sheikha Shamsa bint Hamdan Al Nahyan, the Emirates Red Crescent President’s Assistant for Women’s Affairs, Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts organization was founded in 2006 to offer vocational training aimed at developing the knowledge and skills of underprivileged women in the UAE to ensure them with a dignified life. The organization expands on their crafts, teaches them new technical skills and supplies them with the raw materials and designs to create culturally inspired products that are sold locally and internationally.

Our journey started with just three craftswomen working in an office at the Emirates Red Crescent producing a few products. Today, we are the most comprehensive women empowerment by crafts entity in the UAE. Our craftswomen community boasts more than 200 craftswomen, local and expat across all the emirates, producing more than 90 products ranging from corporate gifts, stationery, home accessories, and a fashion line. Our care includes financial, social, health and education related and more ways of flourishing craftswomen’s lives.

In the past 10 years, we worked with hundreds of craftswomen in the UAE and witnessed their incomes multiply, where some launched their own home businesses. Before joining Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts these women were without an income and fully dependent on others for their financial security. With our continuous support, they receive training, mentorship, and marketing where by producing just a few baskets and dolls, a craftswoman can earn a sustainable income to cover some of her needs.

Meaning of "Al Ghadeer"

In Arabic, “Al Ghadeer” means a body of water that forms on the ground after rain or a flood. People, animals and trees of the desert especially cherish water as they can nourish themselves to survive. We strive to have Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts as the place where the lives of craftswomen and crafts in the UAE flourish. We fully devote ourselves to empowering women through sustainable crafts and are committed to investing in a better world. Under our guidance, the women gain self-confidence from their newly discovered talents, independence from abusive relationships, and most importantly financial security because they can now support themselves and their children’s health and education aspirations. As the old Emirati proverb says, “a drop on a drop becomes a “Ghadeer” and continuous improvement and hard work however small results in a greater good. .

Craftswomen Registration Process

1- Formal documents needed:

- Emirates ID
- Copy of passport
- Personal photo
- Copy of family book (For Emirati Nationals)
- Copy of residence visa

2- General Information:

- Number of children
- Area of residence
- Level of education
- Age
- Crafts (if any)

3- If you are skilled at any of the local crafts such as Al Khoos, Al Telli, or Al Sadu, Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts places an order for the crafted goods.

If you are not skilled in these crafts, Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts gladly provides guidance and training depending on your wishes and level of skill and ability. After providing training, Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts places orders for the crafted goods.

Please Note: To be eligible to join Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts the candidate must not be:
1- Younger than the legal age of 18 years old
2- An owner of a private business that’s comparable to Al Ghadeer UAE Crafts
3- A craftswoman with a high income