UAE School Games set for thrilling finale at Expo City Dubai 18 May

DUBAI: The UAE School Games are all set for an exhilarating finale on May 18 with the spotlight turning to the Dubai Exhibition Centre (DEC) at Expo City Dubai where the most accomplished athletes from various school contingents will vie for podium places.

Organised under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Second Deputy Ruler of Dubai and President of the UAE National Olympic Committee, the finals of the first official edition of the Games will be attended by Dr. Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of Education, Chairman of the General Authority of Sports, and President of the UAE School and University Sports Federation.

The UAE School and Sports Federation is organising the event in partnership with the General Authority of Sports (GAS), besides various sports federations, and federal and local authorities. The tournament is sponsored by Etisalat eand, which is the gold sponsor, and features 2,500 students from 350 schools across the country competing for top honours.

event will pit the best sporting talent from schools nationwide against one another across ten disciplines including football, athletics, swimming, shooting, archery, badminton, fencing, judo, taekwondo, and jiu-jitsu. Senior officials from both the sports and educational sectors in the country are expected to be in attendance during the finals of the UAE School Games 2024.

Dr. Al Falasi said, ‘The UAE School Games aim to enhance the sporting culture among our students and inspire a competitive sporting environment that enables us to discover and develop promising talents with the goal of shaping Emirati champions who can represent the UAE on the international stage in line with the vision and future-focused world-view of our leadership. A sporting programme developed on strong foundations right from the school level can only bring greater success for the UAE at the international level and help realise the objectives of the National Sports Strategy 2031.

‘Holding the first official edition of the School Gam
es reflects the leadership’s keenness to instil a sporting culture and spirit of professionalism in young minds and encourage them to make sports an integral part of their lives, thereby directly benefiting the sports sector in the country while also inspiring the community to embrace an active lifestyle. Sporting activities at the school level serve as the nucleus of professional sporting careers and help raise awareness in young minds about the importance of sports and physical activity as a means of promoting physical and mental health and well-being for all.

Intense sporting matchups apart, the schedule of events is geared to ensure a lively and entertaining atmosphere for families and friends too. The ultimate objective is to foster a sporting culture within the larger community and inspire participation in sporting activities across diverse segments of society. A dedicated fan zone will offer a range of live and e-games suitable for all age groups, exciting rewards, and food carts catering to different
palates. The event has been planned in such a way as to deliver an outstanding experience for all attendees right through the competitions.

The School Games is committed to broadening the scope of sports within schools and fostering a competitive sporting culture aimed at identifying and nurturing young talent early. The ultimate objective is to discover Emirati champions who can proudly represent the UAE on the global stage, including the Olympic Games. This effort is in line with the goals and missions outlined in the National Sports Strategy 2031 to ensure the nation’s sporting ambitions are well served in the long run.

In a multi-sport format designed for students aged 13 to 17, the School Games are organised across three levels, beginning with specialised training programmes customised for students who take an interest in various sporting disciplines. Following on from this, regional competitions are held in each emirate, which ultimately culminate in national-level competitions where participants comp
ete at the highest level.

The Games provide a platform to promote the active involvement of school students across the UAE in sporting pursuits from an early age and represent a concerted effort involving the UAE School and University Sports Federation, educational institutions, and various other sports bodies. Operating under the oversight of the General Authority of Sports, the aim is to boost wider participation in sports, foster the development of budding Emirati athletes, and strengthen the nation’s presence on the sporting stage at the regional, continental, and global levels.

Source: Emirates News Agency