To address its commitment to social responsibility, Sharjah Museums Authority (SMA) has joined forces with Friends of Cancer Patients (FoCP) in Sharjah to raise the public's awareness in the spheres of health and museums.
With social responsibility being at the heart of both parties’ interests, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to further enhance an existing cooperation, was signed at SMA’s headquarters by Manal Ataya, Director-General of SMA, and Sawsan Al-Madhi, Director-General of FoCP.
As per the MoU, SMA will conduct multiple programs for cancer patients while FoCP will be raising the public’s awareness about the importance of museum spaces and programs as a way to improve well-being.
Also, members of FoCP delegations will be granted free access to SMA's 16 museums where they will enjoy guided tours and educational workshops.
Other various workshops carried out by SMA’s Department of Interpretation and Education will target FoCP members and take place either at one of the emirate's museums or any of the hospitals across the country to ensure access to Sharjah’s collections for all.
Additionally, museums in Sharjah will host FoCP delegations and conventions in its premises during events and conferences organised by the association, and will provide free-of-charge halls at SMA’s museums for FoCP’s meetings.
SMA will also allocate the open area of Sharjah Aquarium for FoCP’s event carried out in conjunction with the World and GCC Cancer Awareness days on February 4, 2020.
"This agreement reflects SMA’s commitment to social responsibility and to raising the public’s awareness of various causes, including health related issues. I truly believe that in the connection of mind body and spirit. We are committed to various groups with health-related issues whether special needs, autism or in this case cancer that we know can find positive benefit as a kind of therapy through creative workshops and visiting museums” said Manal Ataya.
She added that SMA - through this MoU - aims to provide moral support for cancer patients to help them better respond to treatment and increase recovery rates and overall well-being.
“As a civil society organisation working to promote cancer control and public health, partnerships like these are vital to FOCP’s success as they help us reach out to a wider audience,” said Dr. Sawsan Al Madhi.
“We thank SMA for extending their support to our beneficiaries and their families, and look forward to engaging patients in the various educational workshops and guided tours the authority will organise for them,” she added.
Al Madhi noted that this agreement testifies that Sharjah’s museums not only preserve the nation’s heritage, but also champions the humanitarian values, ethics and traditions the Emirati society is built on.
The MoU comes in line with the authority’s CSR strategy to provide accessibility for all members of the community through diverse programs and initiatives, in particular for special groups that require more support. SMA is increasing its interest on the impact of cultural engagement on health outcomes and is pioneering initiatives of this kind in the Middle East.