The Embassy of the United Arab Emirates recently announced that it is working towards completing an agreement that would enable it to award a grant to American cities that were hit badly by Hurricane Irma in the fall of 2017. Attorneys for the United States and the UAE are currently finalizing the agreement and hope to award a $2.775 million grant sometime this year. Yousef Al Otaiba, UAE Ambassador to the US, led this initiative after he was deeply moved by the tragedy.
The grant will be allocated over several areas across the city of Jacksonville, FL to benefit as many needy families as possible. Just under half a million dollars would go toward a school board and another $250,000 would go toward a construction company that provides affordable or no-cost construction services. The city would also retain a large portion of it to improve specific parts of the city, such as parks and neighborhoods. The Jacksonville grant is a part of a pledge that the UAE made to donate $10 million to the entire state of Florida for hurricane relief efforts.
“This is what friends do for each other in times of need and is why the UAE is excited to be working with Jacksonville on a proposal that would help communities across the city,” Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba said in a statement. He is happy that the UAE is able to support American cities in times of crisis like this.
Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba has made great strides during his time in Washington to improve the relationship between the UAE and the United States. He has supported the two countries working together to solve problems varying from health issues to technology and innovation. The UAE’s support for Hurricane Irma victims demonstrates the country’s commitment to a strong relationship with the United States beyond economic ties. Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba is excited to continue working to maintain this strong relationship and do more for the citizens of both countries.