Her Royal Highness Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein, Goodwill Ambassador to WFP, was elected this week as the 13th President of the Federation Equestre Internationale (FEI), which is based in Lausanne, Switzerland and is the governing body for all equestrian sports in the world.
She will no doubt take the FEI to new heights and we wish her well with her newest endeavours
WFP Executive Director James Morris
During her four-year term, Princess Haya, who is also the first Arab woman to head the FEI, will oversee all international equestrian events, including those in the 2008 Beijing Olympics, which will be held in Hong Kong.
“This is a great honour for her and for her team in WFP. Since she became WFP’s Goodwill Ambassador last year, Princess Haya has worked with the discipline of a professional athlete to raise awareness around the world to the plight of the hungry poor,” said WFP Executive Director James Morris.
Appointment a first
Princess Haya was appointed a WFP Goodwill Ambassador in October 2005, and is the first Arab and the first woman to take up this position.
Her appointment was supported by UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, making her the second Goodwill Ambassador ever for WFP, after former US Senator George McGovern.
Since joining the WFP team, Princess Haya this year has visited the agency’s operations in Malawi and Ethiopia.
Princess Haya, is the daughter of his majesty late King Hussein Bin Talal of Jordan and wife of General Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, United Arab Emirates Vice President and Prime Minister.
She is an accomplished horsewoman, who has been riding in international competitions since she was 13 years-old.
In 1992 she won the bronze medal in Jumping at the seventh Pan Arab Games and participated in the Sydney Olympics in 2000.
The following year she qualified for the World Championships in Jerez, Spain, making her the first Arab woman to qualify and compete in an equestrian World Championship.
“We applaud her for all her numerous accomplishments. She will no doubt take the FEI to new heights and we wish her well with her newest endeavours,” added Morris.
In parallel with her equestrian career, Princess Haya has focused her attention on humanitarian aid, with a core interest in promoting health, education, youth and sports.
She established the first food aid NGO in the Arab world, “Tkiyet Um Ali” -- a unique initiative she founded in Jordan to provide food aid and social services to the poor.