Empowering Community Members with Down Syndrome in Dubai

In 2010, Shangri-La Hotel, Dubai partnered with Emirates Down Syndrome Association (EDSA) to support their mission to help people with Down syndrome achieve their full potential. Associated with the Dubai Health Authority, EDSA empowers children and adults with Down syndrome throughout the UAE through educational opportunities and fundraising, skills training and rehabilitation, and more. As the hotel’s EMBRACE beneficiary, Shangri-La Hotel, Dubai has provided training programs, vocational rehabilitation, counseling, community events, fundraising and donations and more.

On January 1, 2020, Shangri-La Hotel, Dubai recommitted to supporting EDSA and people affected by Down syndrome by signing a one-year Memorandum of Understanding. Four beneficiaries with Down syndrome will undergo a six-month structured hospitality training program, which the hotel hopes will be a catalyst to long-term careers and sustained livelihood. The partnership will also include health and fire safety training programs, vocational rehabilitation projects and more. To thank EDSA’s staff and volunteers, the hotel will host complimentary room nights and breakfast for EDSA training facilitators, consultants and volunteer workers.

“At Shangri-La Hotel, Dubai, we recognize and believe that we have a responsibility to manage and leverage our resources to help improve and promote a healthy society,” said Hakan Ozel, general manager of Shangri-La Hotel, Dubai. “We believe in the long term success of partnering with EDSA, which is tied in part to the well-being of people from disadvantaged backgrounds but have the courage and desire to achieve.”

“Shangri-La Hotel, Dubai can move the collective needle by offering our resources to help people with disabilities achieve their goals,” concluded Ozel.