No matter how many buildings, foundations, schools, and hospitals we raise, all these are material entities. The real spirit behind the progress is the human spirit. Sheikh Zayed Humanitarian and Sustainability Pioneer The UAE’s Founding Father, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan was known for being a visionary leader whose contributions changed the course of history for the UAE, the Gulf region, and the wider world.

He looked beyond the borders of the UAE, providing support to those who needed it most, regardless of geography, race, gender or religion.

The UAE's deep-rooted sustainability values are due largely to Sheikh Zayed’s commitment to conservation and protection, and many of the programmes that he initiated to preserve the environment are still in place today.

Paying tribute to his legacy, the Prize has been recognising and rewarding sustainability pioneers since 2008.
WHAT IS THE PRIZE? The Zayed Sustainability Prize is the UAE’s pioneering global award that recognises and rewards small and medium enterprises (SMEs), nonprofit organisations (NPOs), and global high schools with impactful, innovative, and inspiring sustainable solutions.

The Prize honours the humanitarian and sustainability legacy of the UAE’s founding father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. To date, we have awarded 117 winners and through them we have transformed the lives of 384 million people.
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NEWS 23 April 2024 Zayed Sustainability Prize’s Beyond2020 Initiative Deploys Life-saving Digital Mammograms in Costa Rica AI-powered mammography services will help detect breast cancer cases among women living in underprivileged communities across Costa Rica Abu Dhabi, UAE – 23 April, 2023 – Beyond2020, the flagship initiative launched by the Zayed Sustainability Prize, the UAE’s pioneering award for sustainability and humanitarianism, today announced the deployment of AI-powered mammography services across Costa Rica to support the early detection and treatment of breast cancer for women living in underprivileged communities. The initiative will significantly enhance access to high quality healthcare for women in the region. 8,000 tests will be conducted annually using the AI-based mammography services, which have been deployed in Juan Pablo II Medical Centre in Cartago, with plans to deploy the services in additional health facilities in the future. A cutting-edge mobile unit has also been deployed, reaching underserved areas across Costa Rica where access to healthcare may be limited. The mobile unit is owned and operated by CENRAD, which has reached 840 women across 13 locations since January. The Beyond2020 deployment in Costa Rica was carried out by the 2022 Zayed Sustainability Prize winner Mamotest, an Argentina-based health-tech SME and Latin America's first tele-mammography network, which has provided low-cost healthcare to more than 750,000 patients and promoted awareness for millions in the region. H.E. Rawdha Alotaiba, Ambassador, UAE Embassy in Costa Rica, said: “Further strengthening the bilateral relations between UAE and Costa Rica, Beyond2020 and its partners are pleased to introduce a project that will enhance the prosperity and wellbeing of 8,000 women annually in Costa Rica, particularly women in remote and underprivileged communities. As we extend the UAE’s humanitarian efforts worldwide, we are dedicated to carrying forward Sheikh Zayed’s humanitarian legacy while supporting collective action to improve lives.” Cindy Quesada Hernández, Ministry of the Status of Women (MSW), Costa Rica, stated: "Promoting a preventive culture and self-care contributes to women in Costa Rica leading healthier lives. Consequently, we express our sincerest gratitude to Beyond2020 and its valuable partners for their significant contribution to the progress of this goal. Their commitment to sustainability and humanitarian aid has changed the lives of the communities they serve, laying the foundation for a more just society for all." In 2022, Costa Rica reported 1,344 new breast cancer cases and 423 breast cancer deaths. Studies find that women from disadvantaged communities have lower rates of breast cancer detection, treatment, and survival compared to women from more affluent areas. By extending Mamotest’s services to rural areas in Costa Rica with limited resources, Beyond2020 is helping to advance health equity and improve access to quality care for thousands of women. Mamotest is the result of Guillermo Pepe’s vision, who always heard first-hand of the huge difference early breast cancer detection could make in saving lives from his father, a doctor specialised in breast imaging diagnosis. “We strive to overcome hurdles with innovation, perseverance, and a deep sense of purpose, ensuring that every woman receives the timely and accurate care she deserves. Our platform ensures 100 percent traceability of patients and provides continuous follow-up until they receive treatment. By harnessing the power of artificial intelligence, Mamotest detects anomalies often overlooked by human observation, significantly improving early-stage detection,” shared Pepe. After winning the Zayed Sustainability Prize in 2022, Mamotest expanded operations of its state-of-the-art diagnostic centres beyond Argentina to Mexico, Costa Rica, Brazil and Spain. Now, they work with existing labs to provide high-quality mammograms at low cost, enabling women to overcome geographical, technological, and economic barriers to access healthcare. The data-driven, end-to-end solution has increased breast cancer survival rates, with improved access to both treatment and medicine. Dr. Lamya Fawwaz, Director of the Zayed Sustainability Prize, said: “Accessible and affordable mammograms have the potential to significantly enhance women's quality of life. Beyond2020 and its partners are glad to play a part in making Costa Rica more responsive to the health needs of its citizens, particularly women. The deployment also builds community awareness on the power of preventative healthcare to empower individuals, promote early detection, and ultimately save lives, fostering a healthier and more resilient society.” Beyond2020 brings together a leading number of partners, which include Abu Dhabi Fund for Development, BNP Paribas, Mubadala Energy and Masdar. As part of Beyond2020’s impact to date, a total of 18 deployments have been rolled out, including energy, health, water and food-related solutions, transforming the lives of over 229,800 people in the following countries: Nepal, Tanzania, Uganda, Jordan, Egypt, Cambodia, Madagascar, Indonesia, Bangladesh, The Philippines, Rwanda, Peru, Lebanon, Sudan, Ethiopia, Vietnam, Malaysia and Costa Rica. India and Colombia have been identified as deployment grounds for future initiatives.   Read More 01 March 2024 From Insight to Action: My Transformative Experience at the World Environmental Education Congress Imagine stepping into a realm where every conversation, every session, ignites a spark within you. This was my reality at the World Environmental Education Congress (WEEC), it is the world’s largest gathering of environmental educators, leaders, advocates, and even students to forge a sustainable future through the power of education. “Connecting People, Creating Tomorrow” was not just a theme, it was an invitation to embark on a life-long journey of sustainability. It challenged us to make a collaborative effort on finding ways to achieve a more sustainable world. We can learn from one another. We may have different approaches to solve the problem, but what matters most is that we’re solving it together for the better.  Among the mosaic of sessions, the keynote speech captivated me. The speaker, Razan Al Mubarak, President of the International Union for Conservation of Nature, empowered the minds of the youth to foster a culture of sustainability. Powerfully, she emphasised that knowledge alone is not enough to solve environmental problems but also the dedication and willingness to protect the environment.  The speech painted a vision where education transcends knowledge dissemination to become a catalyst for empathy, action, and innovation. This wasn't just a speech; it was a call to action for the next generation, which has not only the knowledge but also the heart to protect our planet.  But what made WEEC truly unforgettable were the connections forged in the spaces between. Over steaming cups of coffee, we shared stories, empowering youth with our journey to winning the Zayed Sustainability Prize. In our sessions, we united in the conviction that together, we can overcome environmental challenges worldwide. Leaving the congress, I felt hopeful and determined. The Congress marked a pivotal moment for me, transforming my perspective on our environment. It made me realise that those of us who care about the planet need to lead by example, showing both knowledge and compassion in our efforts.  I owe a debt of gratitude to the Zayed Sustainability Prize for this life-changing journey. I am keen to share the valuable insights acquired at WEEC, just as I have done here. Let's apply these lessons in our communities and classrooms to drive meaningful change. Together, we can forge a future of collective action, living in harmony with nature.   Read More 24 January 2024 Nkhata Bay's Solar Triumph 2014 Zayed Sustainability Prize Winners in the Global High Schools category, Sub-Saharan Africa   By Principal George Kulaso   Our school, the Nkhata Bay Authority in Malawi, was the winner of the Zayed Sustainability Prize in the Global High Schools (Sub-Saharan Africa region). This was an honour not just for our school, but indeed for our entire community.    Last December, our school's delegation had the honour of attending the Prize Awards Ceremony at COP28 UAE. Joyce Mhango and Mary Zayed had the distinct privilege of highlighting the transformative impact that the Prize has had on our entire community. I then joined them in thanking the UAE President Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan for his support.   We shared the profound impact winning the Prize had on our community. A testament to this was Joyce's story of how Mary received her name in honour of Sheikh Zayed, being one of the first babies born in a well-lit health clinic, a direct benefit of our Prize victory.   For some context as to why this meant so much to us, Malawi is one of the least electrified countries in the world with only 5 percent of rural communities having access to power and electricity.   Winning the Prize enabled us to build the Zayed Solar Academy – the very first solar academy in Malawi targeting rural youth and women.   The Zayed Solar Academy initiated the formation of a solar curriculum in collaboration with the Malawi government. We are now a national college specialising in solar PV technologies, recruiting youth around the country.    We are working towards becoming a centre for excellence for solar technologies and research.    Thank you, Sheikh Zayed.   Read More 19 January 2024 Architect of Change: A Youth Activist's Journey at COP28 I'm Harry Rostron, a youth climate activist and third-year student studying Architecture and Environmental Engineering at the University of the West of England. As a Zayed Sustainability Prize Youth Ambassador, I had the privilege of participating in COP28 this past year, an event which left an impression on me and altered my perspective of the climate movement. Growing up in Indonesia I developed a love for island nations and a personal mission to protect the most vulnerable countries against a rapidly changing climate. When I learned that a historic agreement was reached on the operationalisation of the Loss and Damage Fund on the first day of the conference, I knew that COP28 was going to go down in history. With over $700 million pledged, the fund marks a critical starting point for bridging the gap between the global North and South. The invitation to serve as a Youth Ambassador at COP28 was especially exciting for me, as it opened doors to numerous speaking engagements, a rarity for someone my age. I engaged in constructive dialogue over subjects I feel deeply connected to with people at the centre of the topics.  During the Conference of Youth, I was part of a panel where young people discussed their schools’ sustainability initiatives, focusing on the challenges and innovative solutions we encountered. Later, I participated in a panel that highlighted the need for inclusive digitisation and equitable access, while emphasising the integration of sustainable practices across industries. This talk reinforced the critical role of emerging generations in driving transformative change. I am very proud of my contributions at COP28 where I, as a young person, was encouraged to share my thoughts and actively participate in shaping a better future. My journey as a changemaker, uniquely positioned at the vital nexus of architecture and sustainability, has been profoundly defined and sharpened by the insightful discussions I engaged in at this pivotal event, which stands at the core of the climate crisis. Witnessing history in the making at COP28 has left a huge impression on me. The pressing need for transformation in our energy-intensive built environments is clear, and it begins with a field that has captivated me for the past five years: architecture. Engaging with many experts at COP28 has solidified my belief in the urgency of integrating sustainable practices into architecture and construction. This revelation, alongside the significant outcomes on Loss & Damage, stands as one of my most impactful takeaways from the conference.  The voice of the youth is powerful and is now being heard loud across the globe due in part to the increasing inclusivity of COPs. I have been truly inspired by my own generation’s drive to enact meaningful change, and I left the conference with a newfound hope and optimism for the future of our shared planet.      Read More View All TIMELINE Stay updated on the current Prize cycle. Submissions
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