ADIHEX promotes literature aimed at raising awareness of animal conservation among young people

The Abu Dhabi International Game and Equestrian Expo enters its home stretch with a focus on environmental sustainability


The Abu Dhabi International Game and Horseriding Exhibition (ADIHEX) is in its final hours as the most important exhibition of its kind in the Middle East and Africa. The event, which is being held at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC), emphasises the preservation of the environment and nature, including through the world of literature.

In this vein, the International Fund for Hubara Conservation (IFHC) and the Emirates Schools Corporation (ESE) presented at ADIHEX "Stories of our Environment: Challenges and Solutions", the second edition of a book comprising 16 short stories on terrestrial and marine animal conservation by students from the United Arab Emirates.


A total of 175 Emirati schools participated in the 2nd Short Story Challenge promoted by IFHC and ESE, and 16 teams of students won with their compelling and creative narratives based on endangered species native to the Gulf country, such as the houbara bustard, falcon and oryx.

Mohammed al-Baidani, director general of the IFHC, told the official Emirati news agency WAM: "This second edition of the book "Stories of our Environment: Challenges and Solutions" is proof of the growing support and awareness of our youth towards species conservation efforts and preservation of our rich heritage. With great support from the Ministry of Education through the Emirates Schools Corporation, this initiative is an integral part of our Conservation Education: The Houbara Bustard Model". 


This innovative programme uses the Houbara Bustard as a flagship species for educational content to explore sustainability and heritage issues. The Houbara Bustard Model has been very successful in previous years in engaging the younger generation in the importance of conservation through workshops and educational programmes. Students from each school involved were invited to participate in the storytelling competition by forming a multi-skilled team and tackling conservation themes about native Emirati animals such as the hubara, oryx, falcon, dugong, flamingo, sea turtle, Arabian tahr, and dhub or spiny-tailed lizard. Each team was tasked with creating a short story that identified the threat to the species and offered solutions for its conservation.

One of the winners, Alia Salem Alblooshi from Um Al-Emarat School-Al-Ain, was honoured by the award: "We are honoured to have been chosen as one of the winners of the second storytelling challenge by the IFHC and ESE. As part of the younger generation, we take preventive conservation of endangered species very seriously to protect our future ecosystem. We are also very aware that not only the real life of the species is in serious jeopardy, but we also run the risk of erasing our heritage if we lose them. We thank the Hubara Model for making us aware of the real situation among native species in the UAE and how we can participate in saving our future."


The Hubara Model seeks to educate for the preservation of the natural ecosystem by engaging students, teachers and the community at large to establish a new generation of environmental stewards to help develop the UAE as a sustainable and environmentally protective country. 

The UAE has bred and released more than 549,816 Houbara Bustards into the wild through the efforts of the IFHC since 1998. The Fund celebrated the 40th anniversary of its first hatching of captive-bred houbara chicks on Emirati soil during the 19th edition of ADIHEX this year 2022, which will be held in the capital until this Sunday, 2 October.