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Poetry Celebration at Award Ceremony for Emirates NBD Poetry for All Competition at Emirates Airline Festival of Literature 2024

Poetry Celebration at Award Ceremony for Emirates NBD Poetry for All Competition at Emirates Airline Festival of Literature 2024

Saturday, February 3, 2024/ Editor -  


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Dubai, UAE, 2 February 2024: Emirates Airline Festival of Literature hosted a special ceremony to celebrate and honour the winners of the Poetry for All Competition, sponsored by Emirates NBD, a leading banking group in the MENAT (Middle East, North Africa, and Türkiye) region. The annual competition for students aged 8 to 18 honours the tradition of oral poetry in the Arab World and gives young people the chance to show off their performance skills with individual interpretations of favourite poems, which this year were performed in person. 
Winners were chosen by a panel of poets and judges including festival poets Aisha Al Saifi, Amal Al Sahlawi, Jassem Alobaidi and Mohammed Al Hebsi for Arabic and AF Harrold, Dana Dajani, Nguyen Phan Que Mai and Roger McGough for the participants in English.  
The Poetry for All competition attracted a record number of entries in English and Arabic (Fasih and Nabati poetry) competing across the two age group categories of the competition, 8 to 13 years of age and 14 to 18 years of age. In response to the great reception in 2023, we continued with a separate category for Students of Determination. 
This is the seventh year that Emirates NBD has sponsored the competition. Moadh Bukhash, Chief Marketing Officer at Emirates NBD said: “As a homegrown bank, Emirates NBD takes great pride in our Emirati heritage and we are committed to preserving the legacy of oral poetry recitation. Through the sponsorship of the Emirates NBD Poetry For All competition, we can give back to the arts and culture sector and the community, as well as contribute to the knowledge-based economy. This competition is a platform through which young people can showcase their talent and creativity and refine their performance skills.”
He added: “For me personally, the highlight of the initiative is witnessing the enthusiasm and passion that the students have for poetry and performance.”
English Winners - 8-13 Category
1. Ameeliya Abdul Wahab, Abu Dhabi Indian School, Abu Dhabi.
2. Mohamed Keyaan Singalaxana, Al Diyafah High School, Dubai.
3. Vishrut Nair, Gems New Millennium School, Dubai.
English Winners -14–18 Category 
1. Maria Ezzi, MSB Private School, Dubai.
2. Havana Jones, Repton School Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi.
3. Rahma Emad, Gayathi Common School, Abu Dhabi.
English Winners – 8-18 Students of Determination Category
- Vitti Sudheendra, Cambridge International School, Dubai.
Honourable Mention
1. Rhianna Louise, Pristine Private School, Dubai.
2. Ozel Alicia Fernandes, St. Mary’s Catholic High School, Dubai.
Arabic Winners - 8-13 – Arabic Poetry Category:
1. Hamid Ahmed Mohamed al-Hafiti, Hamad bin Abdullah Al-Sharqiya School, Second and Third Cycle, Al Fujirah. 
2. Hala Al Pheil, Union Private School for girls, Al Mamzar, Dubai.
3. Raghad Al Aloul, American International School, Dubai.
4. Leila Darwish, GEMS Barsha National School, Dubai.
Arabic Winners - 8-13 – Nabati Poetry Category: 
1. Hind Mohammed Al Naqbi, Asia bint Mezahim School for girls, Cycle 2, Al Sharjah.
2. Hawthar Al Yaafi, Al Noor International School, Sharjah.
3. Suhail Amer bin Hadfah Al Amri, Al Qou’ School, Cycle 2, Abu Dhabi.
Arabic Winners - 14-18 – Arabic Poetry Category: 
1. Shahid Humaid Al Naqbi, Aisha bint Abi Bakr for girls, Cycle 3, Abu Dhabi.
2. Abdul Karim Ismat Ghazal, Al Shola Private School, Sharjah.
3. Masah Hussam Al Akhras, Muwakib School, Al Khawaneej, Dubai.
Arabic Winners - 14-18 – Nabati Poetry Category: 
1. Ghaia Mohammed Al Saadi, Al Jahli School, Cycle 2 & 3, Al Ain branch, Abu Dhabi.
2. Khalid Yousif Al Naqbi, Zayed Educational Complex, First Branch, Sharjah.
3. Nouf Saeed Al Shehhi, Vision Private School for girls, Cycle 2 & 3, Ras Al Khaimah.
Arabic Winners - 8-18 Students of Determination Category:
1. Sarah Hani Husanin, Al Birdi School, Cycle 2 & 3, Sharjah.
Honourable Mentions: 
1. Ayah Wahib Mahmoud Salih, Zayed City School, Cycle 2 & 3, Abu Dhabi.
2. Abdulrahman Ali Al Ali, Zayed Educational Complex, First Branch, Sharjah.
Other initiatives celebrated at the Festival includes the Voices of Future Generations, which launches its fourth anthology of winning stories; the School Librarian of the Year; OUP Story Writing Competition; RGS Guildford Dubai Children’s Letter Writing Competition; ENBD Poetry For All; Al Futtaim Digital Storytelling Competition; and the announcement of the third cohort for the First Chapter: ELF Seddiqi Writers’ Fellowship.
The Emirates Airline Festival of Literature Festival is held with Founding Partners Emirates Airline and the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture), the Emirate’s dedicated authority for heritage, arts, and culture. It is held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai.

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