Abdullah Al-Dabbagh, a visionary in the field of charitable and humanitarian work in Qatar, played a pivotal role as one of its founding figures in the early 1960s. Serving as the President of the Qatar Charity Association, he was renowned for his benevolence, compassion, and unwavering support for orphans and the underprivileged. Sadly, he passed away at the age of 75 on the evening of Tuesday, May 23, 2023.
Throughout his life, Al-Dabbagh, may he rest in peace, continually emphasized the importance of excellence and innovation in all humanitarian endeavors. His tireless efforts were dedicated to extending mercy and assistance to those in need.
Birth and Early Life
Born in 1948 in Doha, the capital of Qatar, Sheikh Abdullah Mohammed Al-Dabbagh completed his entire education in his homeland. Following his studies, he worked in the Ministry of Education's warehouse management department and later assumed the position of Director of Land Management in the state.
A Humanitarian Journey
In 1984, Al-Dabbagh embarked on a remarkable humanitarian journey, serving as both a worker and a co-founder of the "Qatar Orphan Sponsorship Committee," which was under the leadership of Abdulaziz bin Jassim Al Thani. By 1992, he emerged as a prominent figure within the committee, which subsequently underwent a name change to become the "Qatar Charity Association." Al-Dabbagh played an instrumental role as a board member and later assumed the position of Secretary-General.
Al-Dabbagh's humanitarian endeavors took him to various nations, and as the Qatar Charity Association developed, his influence and impact in caring for and sponsoring orphans expanded significantly. His efforts contributed to nurturing future leaders within local and global communities.
During his tenure, Al-Dabbagh spearheaded numerous impactful projects and initiatives in the humanitarian field. The Qatar Charity Association extended its reach by establishing field offices in several countries.
Through these field offices, Al-Dabbagh provided vital relief aid to communities affected by disasters, including Afghan refugees in Pakistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Palestine, Sudan, and the Horn of Africa.
Demonstrating his dedication, Al-Dabbagh personally led relief delegations, providing immediate aid and solace to those in distress. He maintained a strong presence in the humanitarian field.
Hamad bin Nasser bin Jassim Al Thani, Chairman of the Board of Qatar Charity, expressed, "Abdullah Al-Dabbagh's name has become inseparable from Qatar Charity, as he was one of its founders. He laid the initial foundations and pillars, assuming executive responsibilities for decades, contributing to its global expansion and dedicating a significant amount of his time to it."
Sheikh Ali Al-Qaradaghi served as his advisor (later becoming the Secretary-General of the International Union of Muslim Scholars), and they embarked on journeys together for advocacy and education. Sheikh Ali Al-Qaradaghi recalls Al-Dabbagh's successful efforts in organizing an educational conference in Afghanistan. After the transformation of the committee into an association, Al-Dabbagh demonstrated great interest in Islamic affairs and the state of Muslims. He prioritized the welfare of vulnerable children, women, and the impoverished throughout the Islamic world.
Al-Dabbagh passed away after a battle with illness that lasted several weeks, leading to his transfer to the hospital until his passing in the final hours of Tuesday, May 23, 2023. His funeral was held the following day at the Mohammed bin Abdul Wahab Mosque.
In 1997, Qatar Charity acquired consultative status within the United Nations Economic and Social Council. Under Al-Dabbagh's leadership, the organization gained international recognition and became a member of several global entities.
From 1999 to 2001, Al-Dabbagh served as the Chairman of the Board of Qatar Charity. In 2013, the organization honored him on the occasion of its 30th anniversary, acknowledging his instrumental role in Qatar Charity's journey of "goodness, charity, and humanitarian work as a whole." The ceremony, named "Sass Al-Khair" (The Leader of Goodness) in his honor, celebrated his achievements.
Al-Dabbagh's legacy as an influential figure in the humanitarian sphere is evident through his lifelong dedication, which began in the 1960s. He played a significant role in propelling Qatari charities to remarkable heights within a relatively short timeframe, surpassing many counterparts in the Arab and Islamic worlds.
Quotes About Him
Qatari writer Rabia bin Sabah Al-Kuwari described Al-Dabbagh as a key figure among Qatar's scouting leaders, emphasizing his instrumental role in religious missions and his contributions to Qatar's prosperity through his field of humanitarian work.
Hamad bin Nasser bin Jassim Al Thani, Chairman of the Board of Qatar Charity, noted