In the wake of the Beirut explosion, Emirati publisher Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi, ranked in Forbes 2014’s 200 Most Powerful Arab Women in Family Business, has stepped in to save Beirut’s culture from withering away with the rubble.
Sheikha Bodour, who is also Head of the Advisory Committee of Sharjah World Book Capital (SWBC) and Vice President of the International Publisher’s Association, has pledged to restore three libraries in Beirut impacted by the blast.
“Supporting Lebanon’s cultural scene is vital. As a beacon of light in the Arab world, Lebanon’s contribution to Arab literature and culture is immense,” she wrote on Twitter.
Efforts to restore the three libraries affiliated with local NGO, Assabil, will be directed by the Sharjah World Book Capital office, headed by Sheikha Bodour.
According to the Emirates News Agency, “The work will entail extensive renovation of the Monnot library, as well as supply new equipment to upgrade the Bachoura and Geitawi libraries.”
Standing in solidarity, Sheikha Bodour, who is also the daughter of the Ruler of Sharjah, sees the necessity in protecting literature, culture, and history.
In the week following the blast of Beirut, Sheikha Bodour posted in her Instagram a series of images of the Lebanese flag during protests, eloquently mentioning in the caption, “I am Lebanese until Beirut heals.”