When great minds put their heads together with a common goal of sustainable development, Human & Women’s rights, and a devotion to making the world better as we left it, that is where you find the Better World Fund. This year, we at Chic Icon has another great honor to be the Official Media Partner of the Better World Fund’s illustrious event at this year’s Dubai Expo 2020, taking place on December 3rd-4th. On December 3rd, the event is taking place at the Pavilion France and on the 4th at the breathtaking Four Seasons Dubai. Consisting of an exquisite Gala dinner, high-profile panels, and networking events, and an auction, it is not one you want to miss!
This year’s event has an emphasis on individuals living with disabilities, with International Day of Persons with Disabilities falling on December 3rd. On top of auctions and dinners, the BWF mastermind conference will be held to discuss challenges and opportunities surrounding disability. Together with the Fondation de l’Université Paris-Saclay, the philanthropic platform without borders “Academia for a better World” which promotes the emergence of world premieres in Science and Art to reduce educational divides worldwide will also be launched in Dubai. Take a deeper dive into the event and the Fund as a whole through our interview with the President & Founder Manuel Collas De La Roche.
What are the Better World Fund’s core principles?
We stage international prestigious events gathering celebrities, filmmakers, leaders, companies, and change-makers towards one purpose: make the international commitment for sustainable development goals (SDG) a reality. We spotlight. We connect. We build bridges.
The Better World Fund is an endowment fund based in Paris, France. The Better World was created in 2016 in response to a humanitarian impulse stemming from a society in need of authenticity and truth.
Beyond political, religious, or cultural differences, we focus on Women’s Rights, Education, the Environment, and Biodiversity. More than ever, we must protect our Planet. Since its creation, the Better World Fund has been organizing a series of high-level events in key locations – this program takes place in different parts of the world: the Cannes Film Festival, Venice Film Festival, in Los Angeles, Toronto, Monaco, Cairo, New York, Saudi Arabia and at the Dubai Expo 2020. We work together with other influential people from Cinema, Music, Business, Sports, and Fashion industries.
Our disruptive format makes our high-level events unique: we’ve put together a variety of programs, including a morning Mastermind Conference with influential speakers, a business lunch, a gala dinner with shows, challenges for startups, and prizes to recognize the positive impact of businesses and figures from the film industry.
What can we expect from this year’s Mastermind conference in Dubai?
On the occasion of the International Day of People with Disabilities on December 3rd, 2021, and as part of the Dubai Expo 2020, we will focus our discussion on disability and feature a number of inspiring global speakers.
They will include three para-athletes: triple Paralympic champion Marie-Amélie Le Fur; Sandrine Martinet-Aurieres, gold medallist at the 2016 Summer Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro in Judo and flag bearer of the French delegation for the Tokyo Paralympic Games; and para-athlete and television presenter Zainab Al-Eqabi.
Other extraordinary speakers at the session will be: Dubai Cares CEO Dr. Tariq Al Gurg, Chairman of Thomson Broadcast Ylias Akbaraly, Award-winning producer and Chairman of the Quinn Studios Entertainment Valentina Castellani, the founder of Wheeling Around the World Foundation, Alexandre Bodart Pinto, and Film Director Fadel Almheiri whose film “Dear Mother” will be screened exclusively during our Gala dinner on December 4th.
“Expo is really the place to highlight these global issues. It is the perfect forum where the world is coming together and with mobility one of the key pillars of the event, it really speaks to the heart of what Expo stands for.”
How have you chosen the topic?
As mentioned, December 3rd marks the International Day of People with disabilities. In line with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), the series of events organized on 3rd and 4th of December by the Better World Fund will focus on people living with disabilities, with a host of global names to support the Gala Event Dinner and Auction.
We have chosen the topic with the group SAP, which is one of the key partners to the Dubai Expo and a co-producer to the film “Dear Mother” written by Pierre Filmon and directed by Fadel Al Mheiri, which will be screened at the opening of the Better World Gala Event in the evening of December 4th.
The film is an incredible story about the challenges of disability and the power of love, motherhood, belief and commitment, values which are very much in tune with the values of the Better World Fund. The strategic partnership of the UAE’s Ministry of Culture and Youth, as well as the support of the organization Dubai Cares, the French Embassy, and the French Institute, have also been key to choosing disability as a major theme of focus.
How important is it to bring so many successful individuals from different disciplines to highlight the importance of the topic?
It is paramount that only together and with the inspiration of successful and engaged leaders, artists, sports personalities, public figures, and businessmen and women can we raise awareness about such a key global issue to ensure people with disabilities are well taken care of and considered like any other human being.
Expo is really the place to highlight these global issues. It is the perfect forum where the world is coming together, and with mobility one of the key pillars of the event, it really speaks to the heart of what Expo stands for.
Who do you expect this year to attend the gala dinner?
In line with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), the December events will focus on people living with disabilities, with a host of global names to support the Gala Event Dinner and Auction.
Gal Gadot, Melody Gardot, Gabriella Zanchi, and Sir Clifford LeRoy Edwards will jointly act as the patrons of the luxurious gala event. This is one of the most pressing challenges of our time and having the support of such global icons is pivotal to the work we do. Having their backing helps us bring these issues to a wider audience and is the only way to truly impact the world and humanity.
The celebrities will be awarded by the Foundation during the red-carpet event, honoring them for their tireless support of causes which are not just local or regional but global issues, high on the UN SDG agenda. Funds raised at the Gala Dinner will support the work of Dubai Cares and its child education programs in India.
What is the Better World Fund focused on the most right now?
We focus on the most pressing humanitarian and sustainability issues of our time, whether women’s rights, education, the environment, or biodiversity. Our objective is to educate and take action to reduce inequalities, improve the well-being of all, and protect our Planet and our ecosystems.
After the events in Dubai in December focusing on disability, we will host another event during the Dubai Expo on 24th and 25th March 2022 with the generous support of the group ENGIE to discuss the future and protection of our ocean’s hydrogens and the blue economy.
This is your first event in Dubai. What do you feel about that?
We are thrilled to bring the Better World Fund to Dubai, the UAE, and to this part of the world and are very grateful to the strategic partnership with the UAE Ministry of Culture and Youth and the organization Dubai Cares, without which these events would not have been possible.
Other partners for those extraordinary two days of events include the Embassy of France and the French Institute, SAP, Thomson Broadcast, ARIES, 314 Cannes, the Foundation of the University Paris-Saclay, Alliance Française, Air France, Luxury Magazine, Channel 4 Dubai, Chic Icon Magazine, Monte Carlo Polo Club, 3H Impulse, the Four Seasons, Clinique La Prairie, PISCES VI, Rotary Cosmopolitan Dubai, Art Douadi, Wheeling around the World, Teoola, OCF, Chefs4thePlanet, Planète Katapult, Squair, Union Life and SDB.
With 2021 coming to an end, what does the future hold for the Better World Fund?
In 2022, we will have several global events to continue to bring awareness to the most pressing humanitarian and sustainability issues of our time and raise funds for concrete projects. They will include: another event in Dubai on 24th & 25th March during the Expo with the generous support of the group ENGIE to discuss the future and protection of our oceans, hydrogens, and the blue economy; two events during the Cannes and Venice Film Festivals, as well as one in Dakar, Senegal, in June on the occasion of the International Jazz Festival in St Louis which will focus on women and the need to reduce the gender gap.
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