July 10, 2016

Leila Al Bashr: Lifting Emirati Women Up

July 10, 2016

Leila Al Bashr: Lifting Emirati Women Up

Emirati Leila Al Bashr is delighted to be working as a crane operator at Khalifa Port in Abu Dhabi. Christopher Pike / The National

Christopher Pike / The National

A recent article by The National profiles 19 year old Leila Al Bashr, the Emirati woman who is the only female quay crane operator at Khalifa Port container terminal.

She convinced her family, after initial apprehension, to let her follow her dreams as no one in her close circle of family or friends had pursued the role.

“Initially they were surprised and resisted my decision to join Abu Dhabi Terminals as a crane operator,” Leila said.

“It was something that was unimaginable but, luckily, within days I was able to convince them and today they are very proud of me.”

Leila, the only female crane operator after the first woman left, said her decision proved that women can do anything.

But Leila does not want to retain that title and hopes other women will join her.

“I love my job and will, Inshallah, pursue my career,” she said.

“I want to be an inspiration to all young women, in the country and across the world.

“I really hope that it will inspire more Emirati women to take up roles that are unique for ladies.”

(Read the article in full at The National)

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