Abu Dhabi, UAE: In collaboration with The Authority of Social Contribution – Ma’an, Abu Dhabi Government’s official channel to receive social contributions through a dedicated platform, philanthropist Firoz Merchant of Pure Gold continues to make prisoner welfare a priority commitment to improving the welfare of prison inmates. His dedication to this cause aligns with Ma’an ongoing efforts to address key social priorities within Abu Dhabi's community.

With the Holy Month approaching and its emphasis on humility, humanity, forgiveness and kindness, Mr. Firoz has contributed AED 600,000 to support the ‘Inmates' Humanitarian Cases’ Project that focuses on prisoner’s wellbeing.

This cooperation aligns with Ma’an’s mission to empower community members to select projects most aligned to their purpose and values. In addition to this project, contributions encompass a wide array of programs aimed at enhancing the environment, healthcare, infrastructure, education, and social priorities, thus facilitating collective progress towards collaborative goals.

Mr. Firoz, who began this mission of mercy in 2008 keeping in mind the priority the UAE gives to tolerance and to make the release possible for those who have received their verdict and given second chance for themselves to be reunited with the society and family, aims to facilitate the release of more 3000 prisoners in 2024 itself where he pledged AED 25 million to release and reunite prisoners with their families in their home country.

H. E. Fatema Al Marzooqi, Executive Director Community Engagement and Volunteering, The Authority of Social Contribution – Ma’an saying: “At MA’AN, we prioritize collaboration with diverse sectors of society, spanning governmental, private, and social institutions, as well as individual community members. Our aim is to gather contributions and channel them effectively, empowering our partners to deliver solutions with direct social relevance. Through such partnerships, which constitute a significant aspect of our endeavours, we strive to make tangible strides towards addressing key social priorities and fostering positive societal impact within the Abu Dhabi.

 H. E. Fatema Al Marzooqi added “We are grateful to Mr. Firoz for the generosity in his contribution, which aligns with our authority’s objectives, as well as the spirit of the Holy Month and will have a profound impact in addressing one of our key social priorities.”

Mr. Firoz Merchant mentioned that his inspiration all these years has been his late parents and their values and support to the society, he says simply.  He commented on that saying, “The Forgotten Society” initiative is based on the premise that humanity transcends borders. We express sincere gratitude to all pertinent entities and authorities in UAE for their collaborative efforts in fulfilling this humanitarian endeavour, dedicated to providing prisoners with a chance for redemption and a fresh start. Our commitment remains steadfast in working hand in hand to facilitate their repatriation to their homelands, to reconcile with their family in their home country and society and embark on a journey towards renewed purpose. Let us make this Ramadan a pivotal moment of transformation for both us and them.”

In conjunction with the Director Generals of Police at the Central Jails across the UAE, Mr. Firoz has already succeeded in obtaining the release of over 20,000 prisoners over the years from a wide range of nationalities, and religions. Not only was their debt paid, but the funds contributed were also used for their air tickets to fly home.

About Ma’an

Founded in February 2019 by the Department of Community Development Abu Dhabi, the Authority of Social Contribution – Ma’an, generates genuine social impact by enabling the growth of a thriving Third Sector, including social enterprises, and voluntary groups – and creating collaboration with public and private organisations to drive social innovation.

Ma’an brings together the Government, private sector and civil society with the objective of supporting innovative solutions and contributing to the development of strong, active, collaborative and inclusive communities.

As the Government of Abu Dhabi’s official channel to receive contributions for social priorities, the Authority of Social Contribution – Ma’an ensures fundraising is distributed to causes across the entire Abu Dhabi community in sectors including health, education, environment, the social sector and infrastructure.

Ma’an provides resources and support to seed and grow community-based organisations, raise and allocate funds towards community-based groups and social initiatives, and promote community engagement and a culture of volunteering.