His Excellency Abdul Aziz Al Musallem, Chairman of the Sharjah Heritage Institute, announced the start of Sharjah Heritage Days today, an event organised by Sharjah for the UAE and Arab world as a whole, with the support of HH Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah. The cultural event, which hosts a variety fun and informational activities and programmes, has proven to be an important forum for Emirati tradition and folk heritage.
In a press conference yesterday, HE Al Musallem announced the programme details of the 13th edition of Sharjah Heritage Days, which will run throughout the month of April. HH Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, who will be present during the event, stated, “Heritage is of great importance to the UAE and has always been a top priority. Ever since the country was established, heritage has remained the focal point of cultural events, and financial support designated to maintaining it is ongoing.”
Sharjah Heritage Institute is one of the major societal projects initiated by HH Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, who envisioned it as a cultural and scientific hub in the UAE. He is currently working on several heritage and cultural intiatives that he believes are essential to both local and regional education on UAE’s traditions and the development of its community.
“Thanks to the support of HH Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Sharjah Heritage Days has become a model for the structure of major popular cultural festivals,” said HE Al Musallem.
Through Sharjah Heritage Days, Sharjah Heritage Institute aims to showcase different aspects of UAE tradition, thus contributing to the spread of awareness among younger generations about their roots and the work of their forefathers, as well as encouraging communication about Emirati customs.
Activities of the 13th edition of Sharjah Heritage Days, HE Al Musallem explained, will be based on the slogan “Heritage…The Base Of Our Originality” and will include lectures, symposiums and competitions, with the participation of several Arab, Islamic and international government bodies and institutions.
HE Al Musallem continued, “The event will evoke memories of the UAE’s history and acquaint new generations with stories of their ancestors, traditions, old trades and professions. Sharjah Heritage Days is a sincere expression of the UAE’s identity and allows its visitors and audience to be a part of Emirati culture, past and present.” There will also be a new advertising campaign revolving around appreciation of UAE heritage, experienced through the five senses.
Further, Sharjah Heritage Days will contribute to Sharjah’s touristic value due to the emirate’s exciting geographic, environmental and cultural features. A cultural café at the event will host daily cultural activities, alongside a social media centre run by UAE youth in the Heart of Sharjah, both of which are sponsored by the UAE government and private organisations.
Khawla Al Shamsi, the general coordinator of Sharjah Heritage Days, said cultural and entertainment activities have been arranged for adults and children, and will include classes held at the Children’s Heritage Village and Five Senses Village, artistic shows by local, regional and international heritage groups, and photo, old saying recital, “Lageit Yadooh” (“I Found Grandfather”), wit, and daily riddle competitions.
Sharjah Heritage Days, Ms. Al Shamsi said, is consistently supported by HH Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, and attracts a high level of footfall, joining together heritage lovers, historical researchers, and residents and visitors who are interested in knowing more about the UAE.