- The Authority of Social Contribution – Ma’an announces family cohesion as the theme for the third cycle of its Social Incubator
- Social entrepreneurs in the UAE and across the MENA region are invited to apply and help grow social enterprises in Abu Dhabi and address pressing challenges
- Applications to the programme opened on 15 July and will close on 31 August 2020
Abu Dhabi, 19 July 2020: The Authority of Social Contribution – Ma’an has today announced family cohesion as the new theme for the third cycle of its Ma’an Social Incubator Programme, with budding social entrepreneurs encouraged to develop innovative solutions that will enhance the cohesiveness and unity of families in Abu Dhabi.
The topic has been identified by the Department of Community Development, Abu Dhabi as one of the most pressing challenges facing society due to ever-increasing divorce rates and other factors, and the Social Incubator programme will aim to strengthen the interactions and create stronger emotional bonding between parents, children, relatives, the elderly and couples across the Emirate and highlight the importance of family values.
During the recent economic and health situation, family cohesion has never been so important and the topic is a timely and appropriate theme that merits a strategic and considered approach to problem solving, assisted by this dedicated programme to develop the social sector for the benefit of the whole community.
As part of Ma’an’s commitment to grow the third sector, non-profit associations and social enterprises across Abu Dhabi, social entrepreneurs with innovative ideas are invited to apply for funding and business development support to tackle one of the pressing social challenges.
The Social Incubator programme will support social start-ups with innovative ideas that can help in creating interactions and stronger emotional bonding between parents, children, relatives, the elderly and couples across the Emirate, and support them to become non-profit associations and social enterprises.
This cycle of the Ma’an Social Incubator will provide a platform to assist families to overcome any challenges together, highlight the importance of family values, develop deeper connections and ways of becoming a better family member.
As part of the programme, Ma’an will shortlist and support 10 winning social start-ups, who will then undergo a 90 day-training programme and develop their innovative and original ideas into business ventures that will make families more cohesive.
Ma’an will invest more than AED 2 million in total in this cycle with the successful applicants also having access to milestone-based funding, mentorship, office space, business expertise and investors.
It is the third cycle of the Social Incubator with previous themes focusing on People of Determination and Mental Wellbeing.
The Ma’an Social Incubator was created by the Authority to grow new start-up community-based organizations, non-profit associations and social enterprises for the benefit of people in Abu Dhabi.
With a focus on empowering social innovation and entrepreneurship through competitive incubation cycles, Ma’an aims to encourage talented, enthusiastic, creative and driven social entrepreneurs who can deliver evidence-based social impact.
H.E. Dr. Mugheer Khamis Al Khaili, Chairman of the Department of Community Development, said: “We are pleased at the Department of Community Development to be helping support the issue of closer family cohesion, which is one of the main pillars when it comes to building a developed society.
“The first Better Life Index (BLI) survey conducted in 2018 indicated that on the topic of strong social relations and family communication in Abu Dhabi, 84 per cent of respondents said they are part of a social support network. This represents a slight difference from the average rate of 89 per cent among BLI respondents surveyed from OECD countries, which reflects the quality of life and the strength of the relationships between members of the Abu Dhabi community.”
H.E added: “We are delighted that programmes such as the Ma’an Social Incubator are working to increase greater community bonding and to further consolidate relationships and affection among family members, creating a better balance between our work and social life that will allow people to spend more time with their family and ensure that Abu Dhabi continues to rank among the leading cities in the world in which to live.”
Director General of Ma’an, Her Excellency Salama Al Ameemi said: “No matter how old you are, family is one of the most important elements in life and we must do all we can to promote family cohesion and unity.
“Statistics show that some elements of family cohesion are in decline in the UAE, with a recent report published by Abu Dhabi Statistics Center (ADSC) indicating that the divorce rate is steadily increasing. New statistics released by ADSC show that 28.5 per cent of marriages ended in divorce within the first 12 month, with 62.2 per cent of divorces taking place within the first four years of marriage.
“Our traditional values are centred around love and respect for all family members and the next cycle of our MSI cohort will reflect these important values and help to foster closer ties at home.
“For us, families spending valuable time together and supporting each other more is a key challenge and I would encourage people to step forward and be part of the Ma’an Social Incubator programme to help us solve it. We are looking for ambitious and enthusiastic entrepreneurs who are committed to make a big difference to family life in Abu Dhabi and to finding innovative ways to help bring everyone together.”
Applications for this cycle are open until the end of August with shortlisted teams invited to pitch to a judging panel in September 2020. The 10 winning teams will then be selected and undergo the program in the same month before graduating at the end of the year.
To apply, please visit https://platform.younoodle.com/competition/maan_2020
Applicants must be based in the UAE, GCC or the Middle East and North Africa region. Each team will be eligible to receive milestone funding, released at key milestones, as well as a monthly stipend. Applicants must be 18 and above, living in the UAE, or willing to relocate to Abu Dhabi.