Aster DM Healthcare announced the launch of the ‘Aster Volunteers’ programme as part of the milestone ‘Aster @30’ campaign marking their 30th anniversary. In line with the declaration of 2017 as the Year of Giving by UAE President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the ‘Aster Volunteers’ program reinforces the company’s commitment to supporting the communities it serves and recognizes volunteerism as a key pillar of giving.
The program seeks to bridge the gap between people who would like to help with those in need, across the nine markets that the company operates in through a web portal platform www.astervolunteers.com. The multi-layered initiative targets communities in the Middle East, Africa, India and Philippines, and aims to address key challenges that will help make a positive difference in society.
The launch ceremony in Dubai was flagged off by the representatives of H.E Abdul Rahman Bin Mohammed Al Owais, Cabinet Member & Minister of Health & Prevention – UAE, Dr. Amin Hussain Al Amiri, Asst Undersecretary of Public Health Policy and Licensing, Dr. Hussein Abdul Rahman Al Rand, Asst. Under Secretary for Health & Clinics, H.E. Dr. Salem Al Darmaki, Advisor to the UAE Minister of Health & Prevention, in the presence of Shri Vipul, Consul General of India, His Excellency Amb. Dr. Sa’ed Radaideh, Consul General of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan to the UAE, His Excellency Mr. Omar Abdilaziz Nur, Consul General of Somalia to the UAE, His Excellency Tayeb Al-Rais, Secretary General of Awqaf and Minors Affairs Foundation (AMAF) and Mr. Abdelouahab Soufane, Director of Salma Initiative. The event was also attended by key delegates from government authorities, NGOs officials and the Aster leadership, business associates and employees lead by Dr.Azad Moopen, Founder Chairman & Managing Director of Aster DM Healthcare.
“At Aster DM Healthcare, we want to renew our commitment of giving back to society and support the growth of communities. The Aster@30 initiative and the ‘Aster Volunteer’ programme are testimony to our effort to empower individuals who want to make a positive difference in the society and extend a helping hand to the less fortunate. During the Holy month of Ramadan, we call-upon everyone to join us on this global journey of providing a healing touch to those in need by enrolling on www.astervolunteers.com ,” said Dr. Azad Moopen, Founder Chairman and Managing Director of Aster DM Healthcare.
Aster DM Healthcare also announced signing an agreement with the Government of Dubai’s Awqaf and Minors Affairs Foundation (AMAF) to offer humanitarian aid to those affected by drought and famine in Somalia. As per the agreement, Aster DM Healthcare, donated 156,217 packets of halal meals valued at AED 1.5 Million, raised through the contribution of Aster employees across the network. The Salma Humanitarian Relief Program, an initiative pioneered by the Dubai Islamic Economy Development Centre and managed by AMAF, will ensure the distribution of meals to drought-stricken Somalians in June and July 2017.
Speaking on the agreement, His Excellency Tayeb Al-Rais said: “Drought, hunger and famine threaten the life of one out of every three people in Somalia due to the acute lack of water and food. The crisis has already caused the death of 250,000 people in the past six years. Providing food plays an important role in reducing the number of deaths and achieving food security to ensure the sustained health of these victims of natural disasters and strife. I thank Aster DM Healthcare for its valuable generosity and efforts to support humanitarian aid and help people overcome extreme natural disasters. This public-private sector partnership reflects a shared commitment to giving for the benefit of humanity.”
Aster DM Healthcare also announced providing ongoing medical support to the Syrian refugees settled in Al Zaatari, Al Azraq and Erbid refugee camps in Jordan through the deployment of its volunteers as per the guidelines of United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). Already supporting the refugees with basic healthcare over the last two months, Aster DM Healthcare plans to expand its effort there soon. Through a dedicated medical team and with the support of telemedicine facilities, Aster DM Healthcare is addressing the medical needs of hundreds of patients requiring medical aid.
All Aster@30 activities will run simultaneously throughout the year across the Middle East, Africa and India, driving participation from local volunteers in each market where Aster has a presence- UAE, Oman, Kuwait, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Jordan, India and Philippines. The company plans to take the initiative forward beyond its 30th year celebration through a dedicated vision focused on ‘giving back’ to the communities it serves on every day.
Overview on Aster Volunteers
1. Volunteer to help the community: An individual, wishing to volunteer his time to help people in need can register on www.astervolunteers.com, irrespective of medical or non-medical expertise. For example, a person can donate their time to help a patient reach their doctor’s appointment on time.
2. Free Surgeries and Investigations: A number of free treatments to be provided in the Middle East, India and Africa, including 5000 surgeries and MRI scans through a widespread network under Aster, Medcare and Access brands. External medical experts can also volunteer their services.
3. Recruiting people of determination: Around 100 differently-abled people to be recruited by Aster across geographies
4. Humanitarian Aid in Somalia- North Africa, in partnership with UAE’s Salma Initiative: Essentials like food, nutrition supplements, medicines and clothes will be delivered by Aster’s Disaster and Refugee management team through Salma Humanitarian Relief Program.
5. Permanent medical camp being set-up in the Al Zaatari, Al Azraq and Erbid Syrian refugee camps in Jordan
6. Aster emergency mobile app to aid people in medical emergencies: Provides direct access to emergency numbers, first aid tips and access to volunteers who can come to help. The app was launched in India in May and received the appreciation and blessings of the Honorable President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee.
7. Basic Life Support (BLS) Training programme: Up to 300,000 people would be provided with free training this year, targeting 200,000 individuals in India and 100,000 people across the GCC including school and college students.