HH Sheikha Moza bint Nasser with  former president George H W Bush and Barbara Bush at the ceremony. RIGHT: HH Sheikha Moza bint Nasser listening to a speech after receiving the award from former president George H W Bush and Barbara Bush.

“I’m fully aware of the prestige the University of Texas A & M has in your heart,” said Sheikha Moza, noting that such a university “has much contributed to the social and economic developments in our country, Qatar, through 300 male graduates or 550 current students who are contributing to building our nation’s industry and infrastructure”.

She praised Texas A&M in Qatar for its contribution to the state’s national research capacity and socio-economic development. She also mentioned the pledge made by its students and staff at the campus’s 10th anniversary celebrations, to support the Educate A Child programme she launched in November 2012.

“Educate A Child is seeking to help millions of out-of-school children get into quality primary education . I am delighted that our students in Qatar Foundation are bringing their fresh perspectives to help us create this new world view.”

HH Sheikha Moza  said there were 57mn children in the world who were hard to reach, could not go to school; “every one of them deserves the opportunity to conquer poverty, conflict and marginalisation”.

She explained that the objective of the programme,  “Educate A Child”, is to support the 10mn of these children to attend school within the next three years.

She said that she examined herself those children who lived in a state of chaos in the refugee camp in Kenya, and those who were struggling to survive in the floodplains of Bangladesh, and those descended from poor families living in shantytowns in the city of Rio de Janeiro.

Sheikha Moza pointed out that she had visited just two days before the indigenous children of the Indian community in the Amazon rain forest, where those isolated societies were struggling to preserve their identity and culture, and at the same time keen on access to the World Wide Web.

At a ceremony attended by dignitaries from the University of New England, Texas A&M University, Qatar Foundation and the George Bush Library Foundation, Texas A&M president Dr R Bowen Loftin spoke of the decade-long relationship between his university and Qatar Foundation.

He thanked HH Sheikha Moza for inviting Texas A&M: “to be part of the noble and great initiative called Education City”.

Sheikha Moza  is the first Arab woman to receive the George Bush Award for Excellence in Public Service which is in recognition of what individuals and groups are doing for dedication to public service at the local  and at national and international levels.

Ambassador Ryan C Crocker, dean of the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University, introduced Sheikha Moza to the audience by saying that “creativity and innovation mark everything she does”.

“She is a shining example of service, combining a vision for change and the ability and energy to make it happen,” he continued.

Barbara Bush, presenting the award to Sheikha Moza, noted that Her Highness’s initiatives combined: “the best of modernity and tradition”.

“Her belief in the character and potential of her nation’s people is truly an inspiration,” Barbara Bush said.

The George Bush Award for Excellence in Public Service recognises an individual’s dedication to public service at the local, state, national or international levels. The award underscores president Bush’s lifelong commitment to public service.

Past recipients include former US president Ronald Reagan, former defence secretary Robert M Gates, evangelist William “Billy” F Graham, former governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger, former US senator Edward M Kennedy, former general secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union Mikhail Gorbachev and former chancellor of Germany Helmut Kohl. HH Sheikha Moza is the first Arab and the first woman to receive this award.

“The George Bush Foundation is honoured to recognise the vision and strength epitomised by Sheikha Moza,” stated Lieut Gen Brent Scowcroft, president of the Board of Directors for the George Bush Presidential Library Foundation.

“By providing access to education and building strong families and communities, Sheikah Moza’s initiatives are laying the foundation for Qatar’s success in a global economy. She is an inspiration to her country and to the world,” Scowcroft said.




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