After realising her passion for development work in university, Mada AlSuwaidi joined Dubai Cares in 2013 at age 23.
“The challenges I faced at the start of my career were related to my age,” she explains. “Being a young woman, travelling around the world and meeting with professionals, experts and government officials intimidated me then. However, it allowed me to grow immensely and gain expertise.”
Mada is now responsible for managing 12 programmes in 10 countries. “When I travel, I meet with governments, village leaders, teachers, parents, single mothers and children who have faced poverty, domestic violence, health problems or child labour. I also meet young mothers who missed school due to early pregnancy or child marriage.” It is these interactions that inspire her to help. “It allows me to understand the challenges they face and put in place programmes that address these hardships and truly have an impact on their lives.”