The royal also shared a snapshot of himself and his young daughter in prayer as the Holy Month began.

2017 is already off to a rather philanthropic start, with it being declared the Year of Giving and many humanitarian initiatives set up in response.

However HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum has appealed for increased generosity and support for those in need over Ramadan.

The Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai has urged people of the UAE to spread the message of the Holy Month with humanitarian actions, and called for businesses to do the same.

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“We encourage all government and private-sector entities to launch initiatives to establish the value of giving in the UAE during Ramadan,” the royal said in a statement.

“We invite everyone to launch creative and humanitarian initiatives. The month of Ramadan is an opportunity for us to consolidate the goals behind the Year of Giving, and to instil humanitarian values deep into the DNA of our people and culture.”

sheikh mohammed

The Year of Giving was announced in December by HH Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, with the aim of promoting a culture of giving back to the community and to enhance the spirit of volunteering and loyalty to one’s country.

“Spreading the spirit of giving is part of celebrating Ramadan and we hope to see new philanthropic initiatives and actions by every person in the UAE throughout the holy month this year,” said Sheikh Mohammed, after sending Ramadan greetings to many world leaders.

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“We expect our institutions in the public and private sectors to play a role in promoting a culture of giving in the UAE, and involve various sectors in the community.”

Later, the ruler shared an image of himself and his young daughter, 9-year-old Al Jalila, in prayer.

أنا والجليلة

A post shared by Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (@hhshkmohd) on

His son, HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, also shared an Instagram post commemorating the start of the Holy Month.

The Crown Prince of Dubai, who is also Chairman of the Executive Council (as well as a keen photographer), shared a timelapse clip of the crescent moon rising over the Dubai skyline.

HRH Princess Haya bint Al Hussein also used social media to mark the start of the Holy Month, wishing “people around the world a very joyous Ramadan Mubarak”.

Need some inspiration for how to pay it forward this Holy Month, as per HH Sheikh Mohammed’s wishes?

The Ramadan fridge initiative is back for its second year, allowing anyone to help stock fridges around the city with water and snacks for blue-collar workers’ Iftar.

The concept is the brainchild of Australian mum-of-two Sumayyah Sayed, who launched the initiative last year, and a list of all the fridges across Dubai can be found here.

Or, for more ideas of how to help those in need around the world, click here

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Image: HH Sheikh Mohammed/Instagram