Connector January 2023


CONNECTOR.AE 3 Welcome Happy New Year! Welcome to 2023. A new month of a new year always encourages us to set new resolutions and goals for the 12 months ahead, whether personal or professional goals. One that is always high is to focus more on health, and diet is top of the list. With January also now being branded as Veganuary, and with a vegan diet increasing in popularity, more people will be trying vegan food. An increasing number of restaurants are adding vegan options to their menu, and Dubai has a growing number of vegan restaurants offering delicious food for those that want to incorporate more vegan food into their diet, or want to change totally to veganism. Check out our round up of where you can go to try out the different vegan options on pages 14 to 18. On the subject of diets, a lot of what affects us are down to intolerances of certain food. Connector spoke to a few experts to explain how food intolerances can be addressed and managed, so they don’t affect our daily lives on pages 32 to 34. There is lots more in this issue, and we hope you enjoy reading it all as much as we have enjoyed pulling it all together. Chris Nicolaides Concord Tower, PO Box 126732, Dubai Media City, Dubai, 04 454 9826, Contents of this publication are copyright. No material may be reproduced without written permission. Notice and disclaimer. The material used in this publication is intended to be used for informational purposes only. A sincere effort has been made to report accurate information. However, one or more recognised authorities in health and nutrition may hold different views than those reported therein, and the reader is so advised. This publication is not meant to be an endorsement of any specific product or services offered. Nicole Pereira Vishakha Ramchandani Welcome 3>HS‡3gr‡} >>g # - . /0124 56 01 7gH gH 3>HS‡3r‡} >>g 69

CONNECTOR.AE 5 Dealing With Food Intolerances 32 How To Make The Most Out Of A School Visit Chef’s Corner: Kamini Jha 24 22 Contents 7 Monthly Events Un-Beet-Able Vegan Restaurants To Check Out! Hampstead Bakery And Cafe: Delicious Food With A View Alicia Goveas: Celebrating Humans As A Canvas Meet The Teacher: Beckie Bennett Cruelty Free Brands For A Guilt Free Look A round up of all the major events this January 14 19 35 28 14 35 19 30 Welcome BRINGS YOU AN EVENING WITH SOUTH AFRICAN COMEDY SUPERSTAR SCHALK BEZUIDENHOUT The show starts at 8:30pmwith tickets at AED 160 january fri 20th / Movenpick JBR sat 21st / Park Rotana, Abu Dhabi LF_ Jan_2323_Dates_R1.indd 22 29/11/2022 12:44 pm

CONNECTOR.AE 7 Out And About Etisalat Academy - Mirdiff Gems Founders School - Al Barsha +971 50 102 6265 OUT & ABOUT The New Year has arrived, and with it comes all the enthusiasm to seize the year and make it a great one. DSF Maxin Galkin Till 29 January 4 January In typical UAE fashion, there are many unmissable events to attend throughout January to make this year a special one. Be it in concerts or performances, there is something for every family and friend group to enjoy. If you need a detailed list of all the events to check out this month, keep on reading. The yearly anticipated 28th edition of the Dubai Shopping Festival has begun and offers shoppers a variety of unmissable deals and entertainment. Held at all around Dubai, the sale will see amazing discounts and offers, new dining experiences, raffles and draws, stays at hotels, entertainment and more. Get ready for a two-hour spectacle at Dubai Opera by the hilarious funnyman, television presenter and singer, Maxin Galkin. Known for perfectly entwining wit through parodies, live singing and emotional material, the show is sure to be a great one. Prices start at Dhs 390. 1 2

CONNECTOR.AE 8 CONNECTOR.AE 9 Out And About Out And About Sleeping Beauty A Thousand Tales Chinese New Year 6 and 7 January 6 and 7 January 8 January Ice skating fanatics, delight in watching a spectacular figure skating show at Coca-Cola Arena as part of the entertainment lineup for the Dubai Shopping Festival. The performance will feature Olympic champion Tatiana Navka, and Olympic, World and European champion Alina Zagitova, in a hybrid show that incorporates figure skating and drama. Ticket prices start at Dhs 156. Ballet fanatics, Dubai Opera is bringing a stunning performance that will take you into the amazing world of fairytale heroes, with ‘A Thousand Tales’. With the piano concertos of Alexey Shor and dances from some of the biggest theatres in Europe, enjoy seeing your favourite fairytales from ‘Aladdin’, ‘Snow White’ and more, come to life. Prices start at Dhs 430. The Chinese Lunar New Year is one of the biggest festivals in China, celebrating the start of a new year. As 2023 is the year of the rabbit, the gala event at Dubai Opera will celebrate Chinese culture through a visual event and will also celebrate the ties between China and the Middle East. Prices start at Dhs 195. Junk Kouture World Final 11 January Held at Etihad Arena for one day only, the Junk Kouture World Final, is one of the largest sustainable youth fashion competitions in the world. Targeted at children aged 13 to 18 years old, creativity will run wild as amazing outfits are created out of recycled materials. 60 designs will be seen from around the globe to win the title of Junk Kouture World Designer of the Year. Prices start at Dhs 100. Havasi Drum and Piano Concert Show 14 January Back to perform once again at the Dubai Opera, the show will see a brilliant take on music with a drummer and a piano player going up against each other in a music battle of the genres. Havasi will incorporate classical sounds of the piano, along with the high energy drum performance in the mustwatch show. Prices start at Dhs 235. Prateek Kuhad 14 January Prateek Kuhad, the brilliant singer and songwriter, is coming to Dubai and will perform at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium. Named as one of the leading singer-songwriters in India by Rolling Stone, the artist’s music focuses on love, friendship and connectivity, and attendees will be able to listen to songs from his latest album, ‘The Way That Lovers Do’. Prices start at Dhs 110. 3 4 5 6 7 8

CONNECTOR.AE 10 CONNECTOR.AE 11 Out And About Out And About Abu Dhabi Golf Championships Arjit Singh Kevin Bridges 16 to 22 January 20 January 21 January Golf enthusiasts, the Abu Dhabi Golf championships will be on this month over the four days. Held at Yas Links, the 18th year of the championships will see some of the best golfers in the world competing to win the grand prize. General admission is free to all. Get ready to be captivated by the amazing vocals from singer and music composer, Arjit Singh. The one-night-only show at Coca-Cola Arena will see the artist, known for his romantic ballads, perform amazing hits, including ‘Channa Mereya’, ‘Tum Hi Ho’, ‘Kesariya Tera Ishq Hai Piya’ and more. Prices start at Dhs 95. Hilarious UK comedian, Kevin Bridges is ready to bring a whole load of laughs and giggles to Abu Dhabi at Etihad Arena. The one-day comedy show is part of his ‘The overdue Catch Up’ tour. Known for breaking box office records with the ‘Brand New’ and ‘A Whole Different Story’ tours, Kevin Bridges’ latest show will definitely be a great one. Prices start at 195. An Evening With Schalk Bezuidenhout 20 and 21 January Enjoy a special comedy show taking place this month with the Selfdrive Laughter Factory as they bring funnyman, Schalk Bezuidenhout to the UAE. Performing in two emirates, the show on 20 January will be held in Dubai at Movenpick JBR and at Park Rotana in Abu Dhabi on 21 January. Having recently released his Netflix comedy special, the shows are sure to be a hit. Prices start are set at Dhs 160. Hans Zimmer Live 27 January To close out the Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF), Multiple Academy Award winner Hans Zimmer is set to perform at Coca-Cola Arena. Known for his amazing soundtracks from the well-loved films, ‘The Lion King’, ‘Gladiator’, ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’, and ‘Dune’, the show will also feature an orchestra, live band and dancers. Prices start at Dhs 295. Sting: My Songs Tour 27 January Sting is bringing his brilliant My Songs concert to Abu Dhabi, performing at Etihad Arena. The 17-time Grammy winner will put on a spectacular show with songs including ‘My Heart’, ‘Roxanne’, ‘Every Breath You Take’ and more. Joined by an electric rock ensemble and Joe Sumner, the popular singer-songwriter and bassist, the show will be a brilliant one. Prices start at Dhs 395. 9 10 11 12 13 14

CONNECTOR.AE 12 CONNECTOR.AE 13 Out And About Out And About Held from 12 to 18 January at Coca-Cola Arena, guests can watch a spectacular performance where the insects come to life during the stunning acrobatic and ariel show. Ovo in Portuguese means egg, and the inspiration for the show comes from the momentous celebration of the insects and their life timeline, from birth to turning into the most captivating insects seen. Be it with a tiny ladybug or a crawling caterpillar, the beauty and the unique personalities and abilities of the insect species will be showcased and brought to life. From foot juggling, hand balancing, aerial acts and more, there is so much to experience over the show. Featuring stunning costumes inspired by the details of bugs and a musical score by a seven-piece band performing live throughout the performances, the show will definitely be one to watch. To create the scene, the set design features beautiful structures from a 28 feet egg to a 30 feet flower that mimic the creations of nests, and colonies insects make. The show centres around three characters, the strong and full-of-life Ladybug, the constantly buzzing fly Foreigner and the smart, wise and chief of the insect community, Master Flipo. Ovo was created to mark the 25th anniversary of the company and is also the 25th live production created. Since its beginnings in 1984 in Canada, Cirque du Soleil has been known for its mesmerising shows and its mission to invoke imagination, provoke the senses and evoke emotions in all who attend. Ticket prices start at Dhs 116 and are available on the Coca-Cola Arena website. EnjoyAStellar Circus Show Where Bugs Come To Life! Cirque du Soleil, one of the biggest circus producers in the world, is bringing its amazing show, Ovo, to Dubai. MODANSE BLACKPINK Quoz Arts Fest 27 and 28 January 28 January 28 and 29 January Svetlana Zakharova, the prima at Bolshoi Theatre and etoile at Teatro alla Scala, is putting on a brilliant performance for one night only. MODANSE, the double bill produced by MuzArts, will open with a music piece created for Svetlana Zakharova by Italian choreographer Mauro Bigonzetti, followed by a tribute to Coco Chanel during the second half of the show. Prices start at Dhs 349. Blackpink in your area! The biggest K-pop female group with four members, Jisoo, Jennie, Rose and Lisa, are coming to Abu Dhabi for the first time for an iconic night to remember. Known for their latest hits ‘Pink Venom’, ‘Typa Girl’, ‘Shut Down’, ‘The Happiest Girl’, and more, the performance at Etihad Park will be a part of their Born Pink tour, after the release of their second album, ‘Born Pink’. Prices start at Dhs 350. If you are an art fanatic, then the Quoz Arts Fest is the place to be. Held over a course of two days, the ninth edition of the arts fest at Alserkal Avenue will see a celebration of art through galleries from world-renowned artists, workshops and exhibitions. The event is free to all. 15 16 17

CONNECTOR.AE 14 CONNECTOR.AE 15 Dining Around Dining Around Un-Beet-Able Vegan Restaurants To Check Out! Veganism has, over the years, become a highly tried-out food diet, not only due to its benefits to a person’s overall health but also due to its role in helping protect the environment. Many have the misconception that veganism is all about cutting out a few items in a diet plan, but it is not the case and is now a lifestyle that many choose to partake in. With many opting for it and making the switch, the biggest issue faced is the lack of restaurants to dine at, with restaurants serving a limited number of dishes catering to the lifestyle. However, some places in Dubai have made veganism the forefront of their menu, and to make the hunt easier, here are some of the amazing vegan restaurants to check out, perfect for a family outing or hangouts with friends and a great way to also convince people to give veganism a shot. Soul Sante Cafe Soul Sante Cafe, located on Nasaq Street at Dubai Marina, offers diners a healthy approach to eating through veganism. Tuck into scrumptious dishes, including cauli biryani, bruschetta, shroom verde pizza, carrot ginger soup, special vanilla nutter cake, beetroot quinoa salad, cinnamon chocolate doughnuts and more. Wild and The Moon Looking for a plant-based, organic, homemade, gluten-free, no additives, cold pressed and non-pasteurised restaurant to try out? Then with three locations in Dubai at Alserkal Avenue, Downtown Emaar Boulevard and Gate Avenue at DIFC, Wild and The Moon is the place to check out. From hot meals, sandwiches and super bowls available, tuck into dishes including acai bowl, orange blossom pancakes, wild tacos, spirulina popcorn, blueberry scone and more. Neat Burger If you are craving a delicious but plant-based burger, then the restaurant, backed by celebrities Lewis Hamilton and Leonardo DiCaprio, is a great spot to start. The UK-based chain is located at Dubai Mall and offers diners amazing vegan burgers, including filet-no-fish, neat burger, smoke smash, hamburger, the neat dog, chick’n burger bowl, buffalo nuggets, rocky road, oreo shakes and more. Genki Bakery and Cafe Genki Bakery and Cafe is a great spot to enjoy delicious sweet treats while also tucking into a nutritious meal. Located in Wasl 51 Mall in Jumeirah 1, the restaurant serves diners dishes including teriyaki tofu power bowl, smokey mac and cheese, mixed veggie and green olive dumplings, tahini cheesecake and more.

CONNECTOR.AE 16 CONNECTOR.AE 17 Dining Around Dining Around Comptoir 102 If you are looking for a restaurant that serves organic, vegan and gluten-free food, then Comptoir 102 is the place to be. Located at 102 Beach Road in Jumeirah 1, the restaurant is a brilliant place to enjoy great food while delighting in the stunning interiors. Tuck into dishes including halloumi toast, vegan scrambled eggs, quinoa nori, pana vegan pops, acai bowl, watermelon and feta salad and more. 04-3854555 Coco Yogo Who said a vegan diet could limit people that have a sweet tooth? Coco Yogo is a great spot to get all your sweet cravings met without sacrificing or compromising on desserts. The restaurant serves diners a variety of choices, including chocolate salted caramel cheesecake, matcha mint chip ice cream, espresso brownie, wild orange truffle bliss balls and more. Acai Spot Acai Spot, as the name suggests, is a brilliant place to enjoy a good acai bowl. Known for being the first acai spot since 2015 in Dubai, the menu is centred around acai and its products, which are an exotic relative of blueberries and cranberries. Apart from acai, diners can also enjoy dishes including egg breakfast bagel, salmon avo on toast, chicken wrap, homemade almond butter jar and more. Planet Terra Opened in 2022, Planet Terra is a great place to enjoy some delicious vegan and organic food. Located at the Panaroma Building in The Greens, the restaurant has a great ambience to catch up with friends or start your day with a morning coffee. Delight in delicious dishes, including tropical acai bowl, lasagna, mushroom shawarma, stuffed butternut squash, kimchi pad Thai and more. 054-5833330 Bounty Beets With two branches in Dubai, located at Le Meridien Mina Seyahi and Le Meridien Dubai Hotel and Conference Centre on Airport Road, Bounty Beets is a great spot for delicious organic, vegan and gluten-free options that do not disappoint. The pet-friendly restaurant has dishes including avo toast, zucchini tacos, sweet potato gnocchi, harissa roasted cauliflower steak, chickpea and almond pancakes and more. SEVA Experience Located on Jumeriah Beach Road, SEVA Experience offers all diners a 100% plant-based, gluten-free, GMOs-free and cane sugar-free cafe. Situated within a stunning garden, the spot is great for a pick-me-up meal when feeling low or to nourish your body while spending time with family and friends. The restaurant serves dishes including oyster tacos, earth sushi rolls, avocado toast with probiotics, eggless omelette, munchies potatoes and more. 058-5435888 Just Vegan Just Vegan, the US-based restaurant, which branched out and opened its vegan branch in Dubai, is a good spot to enjoy lovely plant-based food. With three branches in Jumeirah and Business Bay, delight in dishes including banana and coconut french toast, green matcha super bowl, New York double cheese burger, hot chick’n wrap, penne alfredo and more. The Cycle Bistro The Cycle Bistro is the only paleo-based restaurant in Dubai and has menus that are curated based on the season and local produce. With two branches in Dubai in Motor City and Jumeirah, delight in dishes including spiced apple and pear crumble, shroom beef burger, pulled lamb pizza, rib eye Asada, Thai prawn soup, salmon benedict, cauliflower satay and more.

CONNECTOR.AE 18 CONNECTOR.AE 19 Dining Around Dining Around With comfort yet delicious dishes at the core of the restaurant, diners can expect scrumptious food for reasonable prices. Located on the ground floor of Downtown Kitchens near Dubai Mall, the restaurant on entering, gives a cosy vibe, perfect for catching up with friends or spending time with family over a meal. Inspired by the village of Hampstead in London, the restaurant offers a slice of calm amongst the busy husHampstead Bakery And Cafe: Delicious Food With A View Hampstead Bakery and Cafe creates a brilliant experience for diners to enjoy while spending shared time over food. tle of city life, with its warm ambience. The dining spot also has friendly staff that cater to your every need, and while eating take in the stunning view of the Dubai skyline as well as views of the Burj Khalifa, which is especially captivating at night. While at the restaurant, tuck into a wide variety of dishes, be it breakfast, lunch or dinner, including loaded toast, breakfast quiche, signature roast, shepherd’s pie, hot smoked beef short rib, grilled chicken and more. With all the available options, if confused on what to try, the spiced crispy chicken brioche is the perfect dish to enjoy. Afternoon tea is also available daily, to enjoy while taking in the view. The average price for a three-course meal, with a main and dessert, comes up to Dhs 112. Call 050-5830155 Green Earth Cafe Located at Wasl 51 Mall on Al Wasl Road, Green Earth Cafe is a great place to visit for a delicious vegan meal, be it breakfast, lunch, dinner or for a quick bite. Tuck into tasty dishes including unagi dragon roll, nasi goreng, granola bowl, Asian pan noodles, crispy waffles, chia seed pudding, berry acai bowl, emping chips and more. 056-7108707 MyGovinda’s Based in the UAE since 2001, MyGovinda’s is a brilliant spot to enjoy Indian sattvic food at its finest. With four branches in Dubai at JLT, Karama, Silicon Oasis and Al Arjan, the restaurant serves a range of dishes catering to a vegan diet. Diners can enjoy delicious flavours in the form of sweets, snacks and chaat with dishes including masala papad, Kasturi gobi and broccoli, vegetable hariyali, palak matar, hair bhari sabzi, chana masala and more. Vagaea Located on Wasl Square, Vagaea is a great restaurant to try out for tasty vegan food. The restaurant is great for capturing those perfect Instagram pictures while tucking into a delicious meal with dishes including scrambled tofu, croissant sandwich, jack wrap, pulled shroom burger, cheese balls, pizzata bread and more. 050-9727080 Little Erth by NABZ&G Little Erth is the one-stop for delicious vegan and vegetarian dining. Located at Cluster J in Jumeirah Lakes Towers, the restaurant by Nabih and Ghalia uses wholesome flavours served with a twist. Delight in dishes including vegan mac and cheese, summer rolls, avocado beetroot wrap, bean well burger, vegan shawarma and more.

CONNECTOR.AE 20 CONNECTOR.AE 21 Dining Around Dining Around Tasty Avocado Toast With A Twist If your resolution for the New Year is to stop making a pit stop to grab breakfast, this easy recipe is the perfect goto for a quick and filling breakfast. Made by Chef Sagar Kumar, Executive Chef at VIBE Cafe, the easy recipe is simple to whip up, especially when you have people over and is a very delicious meal to enjoy. As Veganuary is celebrated in the month of January, do not wait till you can visit your favourite restaurant to enjoy delicious vegan dishes, and enjoy making this recipe for a breakfast that is sure to become a staple in your diet quickly. Ingredients: 430g Of Canned Chickpeas, Drained And Rinsed 2 Medium Cooked Beetroots, Cut Into Quarters 2 Cloves Garlic Zest And Juice From 1 Medium Lemon 2 To 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil 1/4 Teaspoon Salt 1/2 Teaspoon Ground Cumin 1 Sliced Avocado Crushed Chilli And Mixed Seeds Molasses Slice Of Sourdough Recipe: 1. To make the beetroot hummus, add the beetroot, chickpeas and garlic into a food processor and process for 1 minute until ground. 2. Add the salt, cumin, olive oil, and lemon juice and process until it has a grainy texture - the salt, cumin, olive oil, and lemon juice can be adjusted based on the preference for seasoning. 3. Spread the beetroot hummus on sourdough toast or any other bread of choice. 4. Top it off with sliced avocados. 5. Add crushed chilli, mixed seeds, and molasses to garnish. January 6th – 14th Starting The Year, In The Best Possible Taste! Ron Josol George Zach Harry Stachini The show starts at 8:30pmwith tickets at AED 160 LF_ Connector ad Jan 2023.indd 1 14/12/2022 1:06 PM

CONNECTOR.AE 22 CONNECTOR.AE 23 Dining Around Dining Around of our course in Hospitality Management. One of them was in a kitchen, and I will never forget how at home I felt in that kitchen. From that day on, I knew what I wanted to do and where I belonged. What is your earliest cooking memory? I do not recall a specific memory, but I do fondly remember my sister and me helping my mother cook every day after she got back from work. What is your favourite dish from your country? That would be a dish called matar kulcha. It is basically fermented baked bread stuffed with a masala made of dried peas, served with an Indian pickle called achar and salad. It was a treat, as we were not allowed to get food from anywhere and ate at home. Whenever we did get food from elsewhere, it would be matar kulcha. What is the one go-to and easy snack you love making for midnight cravings? In India, roadside snacks (also known as chaat) are a very big part of our culture. Dry bhel, being one of them, is very easy to make. Just throw in some puffed rice with some peanuts, diced onions and tomatoes with some chaat masala and a few other seasonings and enjoy. Another one would be the classic Maggi noodles! What is the one raw ingredient you cannot cook without from your country? Definitely onions. Indian cuisine is incomplete without it. What is the best dish to try at your restaurant? I have a whole list, but if I had to name one, my absolute favourite would be the ‘Fiery Rajasthani Laal Maas’. It has a rich base gravy made with tomato and chilli, flavoured with smoked cloves that complement the rest of the elements beautifully. A must-try when stopping by The Cinnamon Club! Chef ’s Corner: Kamini Jha Cooking a good meal is a craft that requires knowledge and appreciation for the ingredients and flavours. Chef Kamini Jha, the Head Chef at Cinnamon Club in Park Hyatt Dubai, is a prime example of bringing her passion and mastery to cooking. Born in India, while studying Hotel Management and receiving training in the kitchen, Chef Kamini realised her dream to become a chef. Starting her culinary journey in 2008,Chef Kamini has now garnered 14 years of experience in the food industry. Chef Kamini shares her story on the culinary world and how she brings the best of contemporary and fusion Indian cooking to diners. How did you get started in the food industry? During my time at university, we had to go for different industrial training, as part

CONNECTOR.AE 24 CONNECTOR.AE 25 Kids And Education Kids And Education How To Make The Most Out Of A School Visit Education is an essential part of a child’s life. With the right tools and learning mechanisms taught, a child can grow into their potential, and develop social skills while also finding the right career path for their future. One of the biggest steps however, is to find the right school, that caters to a child’s every need and helps them cultivate the talents they possess. With so many options available, especially ranging in the different curriculums, finding the right school can, for many, be a challenging task. To make the process easier on the parents, all schools host open days and school visits for parents and children to get a better idea of the facilities at the school, as well as the place where their children will be spending a good chunk of their childhood creating and learning. To help make open days and school visits be more insightful, Connector, in conversation with schools around Dubai, shared how to parents can make best use of the visit to the school. One of the key benefits of attending open days is being able to interact with other parents, children as well as staff, to gain insight into how the school operates and get all the answers on the spot, while also understanding the environment in person. Mark Ford, Principal at The English College Dubai said, “Open days are a great way to experience the school and meet other interested families, that way, you also learn from their journey. The leadership team will answer all your questions, and you can always organise something more private if you think it fits your family.” Depending on whether parents are looking to enrol their child at the beginning or during the academic year, visiting the school during open days allows parents to better interact with the staff and teachers, as they will be available and not busy when visiting during school hours. Eloïse Briey, Boarding Assistant at Swiss International School Dubai said, “The best time to visit a school is really when it is convenient for you. But outside that, the ideal time would be during specific open days when more members of staff and teachers are available to answer any questions you have, or questions you did not even know you had! You can always go back and visit a school for second time to see it in day time, operational hours as well. At SISD, we are very happy to support school tours and offer them every day of the week.” While visiting, parents should be mindful of these points, to ensure that the school is providing all the necessary requirements to their students. Eloïse Briey of Swiss International School Dubai said, 1. Happy and engaged children 2. Qualified and experienced teachers 3. Facilities, learning environments 4. Extracurricular activities and sports offered, particularly if your child is interested in specific ones 5. Opportunities to gain life skills, for example, enterprise activities, Duke of Edinburgh, Service-based learning, and more 6. What are the values of the school, and are they alive and well? 7. Organisation and safety

CONNECTOR.AE 26 CONNECTOR.AE 27 Kids And Education Kids And Education When children are invested in going to school, have the right tools under the guidance of the staff, have a place that they are comfortable enough to succeed in and are given the opportunities to grow through academics and extracurriculars, will help ensure that a child will be successful at the school. Additionally, Mark Ford of The English College Dubai mentioned the important factors to consider for a child’s overall growth and happiness in the school are, 1. The community 2. What are the exam results like, and what destination do the students go to? 3. Where are the teaching staff from and how much experience do they have? 4. What is the turnover of the staff? 5. What are the class sizes? 6. Who owns the school? Exams are a vital part of a child’s academic life, and enquiring about the process of examinations as well as regarding the staff and community, will help gauge if a child will be able to cope and thrive at the school. Additionally, parents with children that are exceptionally talented in academics, sports and arts, and would like their children to have more emphasis in that specific field, should talk to the teachers managing the teams to figure out whether their child will be able to continue to grow their talents at the school. Eloïse Briey, of Swiss International School Dubai said, “Depending on your child’s interests or needs, whether academic, artistic, athletic, wellbeing, a member of the relevant department will be able to answer any questions or concerns in more depth.” Checking the facilities and reading about the schools is a good way to get an idea of the school, however, communicating with the heads at the school helps to see if the child’s requirements are provided by the school and match the school values, making it one of the crucial ways to see if the school is the right fit. Mark Ford of The English College Dubai advised, “The most important point of reference is the Principal, the Heads of School and the Senior Leaders to understand if their philosophy and aspirations align with yours. Connecting with other parents can be crucial to understanding the strengths and the areas of opportunity.” Another great way to easily narrow down schools is by getting in touch with other parents. By interacting with mutual friends or joining school groups and posing questions about the school, will aid parents in ensuring that the school is the right fit for their child. Eloïse Briey of Swiss International School Dubai said, “Having been through the process, other parents will be able to relate to you and give you valuable information about their and their child’s experience at the school.” Open days and school visits are a great initiative by schools to assist parents in finding a suitable school for their child and ease their worry about whether the school will bring out the best in their child. Mark Ford of The English College Dubai mentioned, “You know your child better than anyone, and not all schools cater for their needs, select a couple of important questions to help you shortlist the best options.” Although there are many ways to decide, it is imperative to listen to instincts, as parents know their child’s needs the best and will be able to find the school that is the right fit. Eloïse Briey of Swiss International School Dubai said, “A lot of make or break factors boil down to personal preference. It is important for you to decide what your non-negotiables are. Those can be anything from subjects offered, amount of homework, sports facilities to accessibility.” Finding the proper school can be a difficult process, but with the different initiatives set in place, including communicating with staff and heads, talking to parents, and assessing the school, school visits can be a fruitful experience, for parents and children alike to find the school that works for each child and helps to bring out and hone all their talents and skills.

CONNECTOR.AE 28 CONNECTOR.AE 29 Kids And Education Kids And Education benefits of learning through play and how their independence and love for learning somehow got lost as they got older. Early years pupils choose how to scaffold their play through directed tasks and knowledgeable staff supporting them, but not necessarily telling them how to get there, just guiding them with suggestions and effective questioning. Taking this practice through into Key Stage one has been a mission of mine and something that I endeavour to do in my own teaching practice as well as supporting colleagues in developing their own practice. Why do you love teaching? No one day is ever the same, you can rely on the young people that we teach to bring a smile to your face almost every day in what they do, say and learn. Those little moments when a child suddenly can blend the sounds to read words independently, when they remember their number facts and come bounding up to tell you they have, seeing the smiles when they receive praise from you or just the daily compliments that they say as you walk past. Do you remember your favourite teacher from school? Vividly, as she was one of my first teachers, her name was Mrs Hughes, and she was kind, caring and bubbly. Her classroom was always filled with fun activities and games to entertain us all. She was everyone’s favourite, and to this day, my school friends and I still talk about the impact she had on us. How do you make everyday classes more interesting? Through ensuring you know your class well, knowing what each individual likes, dislikes, how they best learn, their strengths and their areas to develop. Then once you know this, you can develop lessons that appeal, are fun, challenging. One of my favourite things to do is to have hooks into their learning that spark excitement and mystery. For example, one morning, the children came into my classroom to find water all over the floor, lily pads on the desks and police tape cornering off a section of the room. We had the caretaker come in and explain how he had seen some strange things the night before but had ignored them as though he was imagining things. The children had to find out clues as to what may have happened. This then led to us introducing the book Tuesday by David Weisner, by this point, they were totally engrossed in the book and the tasks provided. What is a unique part of the school? For me, it’s the living walls and the indoor gardens at RGS Guildford Dubai, I love the fact that we have real-life plants, trees and flowers that are growing within our central atriums, from the ground floor to the third floor. I love the greenery and the smell when they have just watered them all. It reminds me a little of being at home back in England as I grew up in the countryside surrounded by fields and plants. What would you do if you were not a teacher? That’s a tough one, the other profession I had considered was to be a paramedic, but I have a slight phobia of needles, so, therefore, decided that it probably wasn’t the best choice for a vocation. Meet The Teacher: Beckie Bennett Being a teacher is no easy feat for anyone to accomplish, nor is it an easy career path to get into. Beckie Bennett, Key Stage One Assistant Head at RGS Guildford Dubai, had a dream to become a teacher, turned it into reality, and has been making waves with all the students she comes across. With 17 years of teaching experience, Beckie shares how she found her passion for teaching and makes every day at school an interesting one for children. What inspired you to start teaching? I have always enjoyed working and supporting young people, and from a young age, growing up in a rural village, I used to babysit regularly for our neighbours and family friends. Both my aunt and grandmother were teachers, and it just seemed like a natural progression from babysitting, to nannying to teaching. I finished my schooling and started my teaching degree at 18. How did you decide to teach your current subject? I enroled for an Early Years teaching degree at university, because I felt strongly about play-based learning and how learning through this method enabled so many effective teaching opportunities. The likes of Maria Montessori and Reggio Emelia and the research behind their ideas sparked my interest and led me to spend the first eight years of my teaching life working in the foundation stages, I then moved up into Key Stage One and Two taking the best practices of early years into the phases, seeing the

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CONNECTOR.AE 32 CONNECTOR.AE 33 Health and Wellness Health and Wellness to any of the ingredients. But it’s important to be done under the supervision of the dietician, who is the best to design a suitable diet plan according to the result of the food intolerance test.” People can also develop food sensitivity to certain food items, which cause mild reactions to the person. Dr Lina Doumani of Allied Medical Center also said, “There has been a lot of hype about food sensitivity, and that is completely a different story. Food sensitivity reactions are usually mainly bloating, and these are detected by testing the IgE antibodies in the blood. For food sensitivity, one can eat these food items in moderation with no health risks except gastrointestinal discomfort.” Testing for food intolerances can be done in several ways, through a blood test, keeping a food diary, breath test and more, and the right test will be determined by the doctor on visiting. On finding an intolerance to an item, some tips for dealing with food intolerances are: Communicating with the staff at restaurants: While eating at restaurants, there are times that the food item with an intolerance to is added to the dish and unknowingly consumed. To avoid this, discuss with the staff on what is added to avoid dealing with the symptoms. As mentioned by Dr Lina Doumani of Allied Medical Center, “It is very important for individuals with food intolerances to ask the staff at restaurants the content of the dish they order and be diligent about it. Often there are substitutes symptoms lasting for a few hours to over several days. According to Dr Dana Al Hamwi, Clinical Dietician, Dubai London Hospital, the symptoms include, • Diarrhoea • Bloating • Flatulence • Tummy pain • Headache • Tiredness • Constipation • Rashes • Joints pain • Eczema • Based on the severity of the food intolerance, the symptoms vary from person to person and will not be the same. Some of the common food intolerances that people develop are towards milk, gluten, food colouring, preservatives and sulphites. “Food intolerances only affect the digestive system, and the severity of the symptoms is often dependent on the amount of food eaten, so a small amount of the bothersome food may be eaten without a problem,” Dr Ruhil Badiani of Cornerstone Clinic advised. Additionally, with the help of your doctor or dietician, food intolerances can be identified and addressed, giving relief to the individual. Dr Dana Al Hamwi of Dubai London Hospital added, “If there is a food intolerance, we have to try to avoid or reduce eating the foods that the patient is intolerant to, including foods where the patient is intolerant Dealing With Food Intolerances Food intolerance is a common health ailment that many people experience. Very often, food allergies and food intolerances are confused with one another, despite being different issues. According to Dr Ruhil Badiani, Family Physician at Cornerstone Clinic, “A person who has a food intolerance has difficulties with digesting certain foods. It is estimated that 15 to 20% of the population are affected, and is common in those with digestive problems such as irritable bowel syndrome.” On the other hand, as mentioned by Dr Lina Doumani, Clinical Dietician at Allied Medical Center said, “Food allergies are antibody reactions in the body to certain antigens in food.” Food allergies are issues that affect the immune system and can be life-threatening to a person, making it important to avoid them at all costs. Unlike food allergies, food intolerances are not critical in nature and can start a few hours after consuming a certain item, with

CONNECTOR.AE 34 CONNECTOR.AE 35 Health and Wellness Health and Wellness Alicia Goveas:Celebrating Humans As A Canvas Every artist has a unique mark that helps in establishing themselves in the creative world. Although the art inspires many, it is not possible to replicate due to the effort and attention to detail that only the artist and their creativity can pinpoint. for milk containing lactose, such as oat, almond, or soy milk.” Carry medication: One way to prevent symptoms of food intolerances when the item is consumed, is by carrying the medication prescribed by the doctor. Many times, when the food intolerant to is consumed without prior knowledge, having the medication on hand can prevent symptoms. Dr Dana Al Hamwi of Dubai London Hospital added, “When symptoms occur, we have to be prepared, so overthe-counter medicines like antacids or antidiarrheals can help.” Pay attention to details: One of the common mistakes made with food intolerances is buying without checking. While grocery Art is one of the most beautiful forms for many to express their creativity, whether as a hobby or as a full-time passion. Alicia Goveas is a prime example of taking her hobby into a full-time gig within seven years, which has left her more fulfilled than ever. Alicia’s journey with art began at a young age, similar to when many are introduced to art, and quickly became an outlet for her to channel her creativity. shopping, it is vital to go through the ingredients in every product to prevent dealing with symptoms after consumption. Dr Ruhil Badiani of Cornerstone Clinic said, “Make sure to read the ingredients list of anything that you buy at the shops and avoid any that have troublesome ingredients.” As individuals, we understand ourselves the best, and it is key to check in from time to time on how our body is responding to certain food items and take the necessary steps required when the body needs it. In comparison to food allergies which can be life-threatening, food intolerances are not as severe and have no cure, and visiting and talking to a doctor or dietician will help if finding the right step to manage it and live symptom-free. Born in the UAE in 1993 and raised in Dubai, Alicia started going to art school when she was around five years old. Alicia said, “Art was a hobby then, and it was one to keep me busy during the weekdays and the evenings. I never really had a vision or the slightest idea that, someday, it would be a professional means for me.” While in university studying Human Resources, Alicia participated in multiple exhibitions and events part-time. While working

CONNECTOR.AE 36 CONNECTOR.AE 37 Health and Wellness Health and Wellness Having made it to the top 6, Alicia got the opportunity to meet more like-minded creatives and to experiment with her art on a bigger scale, saying, “Ever since then, I have never looked back. I have been levelling up and diversifying and do not just stick to face or body paint. I like to do a lot of different things, and it contributes to my growth, as an artist and as an individual.” One of her current specialties, however, is body painting, which allows Alicia to use humans as her canvas, and helps the wearer to feel their most confident, by looking past all their flaws and appreciating themselves for who they are. Alicia first started getting into body art when it was a novel concept in 2015, and on sharing her work on social media, ended up receiving requests to create art on dancers and performers that work at clubs, and painting people at concerts and festivals. “For me, when I body paint, I am not painting on a canvas, I am painting on a talking, living, breathing human being.” Alicia added, “I interact with them closely and learn how they feel, and it offers a much deeper connection and process.” Through body art, Alicia has been able to give power to people’s insecurities and help them find a deeper appreciation for themselves while focusing on the beauty humans possess. with a brand that needed a children’s face painter for an event, Alicia offered to help, as no one else could be found at the last minute. Having not painted in a while, at 22 years old, the experience was a nerve-wracking one for her, but reignited her love and passion once again for art. Alicia said, “I had a lot of peace and happiness with doing art and had a real fondness for it. It is total happiness, and I love what I do.” With being completely self-taught, being an artist happened gradually for Alicia, starting with her wanting to learn more and buying face paints, then using them to experiment by painting her face and the people around her. Alicia said, “Being an artist, for me, is more fulfilling on a deeper level. I get to really speak my mind through my work.” Slowly but surely, as she started falling in love with art once more, Alicia started contemplating whether she could do this fulltime rather than as a project on the side. Having now amassed seven years as an artist, the initial years in her career were the hardest for Alicia saying, “The first three of four years were so difficult as I would work everyday and weekend, as well as public holidays, when people close to me would have a day off to celebrate.” However, Alicia chose to look on the bright side, as she knew that despite the first few years being the most challenging, she wanted to make this her career and could not see herself doing anything else, as it gave her immense joy. Her career started with small-scale mall events as a children’s face painter before she started experimenting more with different art mediums. One of the biggest milestones in Alicia’s career as an artist came in 2017, when she participated in one of the biggest beauty awards in the region called the ‘NYX Face Awards’. With body painting, there are so many aspects that Alicia has to consider, from finding the right shades, creating the art catering to their body type and trusting the process to create a stunning end result. Alicia said, “Every challenge has only taught me how not to repeat a mistake, how to work around it or just get better.” As an Indian, Alicia loves taking inspiration from her Indian culture and is heavily inspired by the works of other Indian artists, the people, the music, the food, and the colours. Alicia said, “For me, art is an expression, and it is more of a combination of the multicultural upbringing that I had, and it comes from a deeper place, it is not just commercial. Aside from creating for brands, I also love to have days and shoots with creations that are solely mine, from my brain and are the ones that make me the happiest.” When feeling uninspired, Alicia says, “It’s tough. If there are a few books I have read or shows that I have watched, I like to remind myself of them or read a snippet from it, or

CONNECTOR.AE 38 Health and Wellness while having lunch watch a part of the show that enforces how much I love doing this. I tend to look at myself as a third party and say that ‘oh my gosh, you get to do this, it is fantastic, keep going’, and then I continue with the task.” With the UAE now giving artists the platform to grow and create on a larger scale, the ability and credibility given to an artist is immense, allowing people to explore and not limit themselves to specific jobs. Alicia said, “There is a difference between being an artist and doing it only out of love, and it being your profession. When it is professional, if it means redoing it, delivering on time, meeting the deadlines, and showing up even when tired, you got to do it as it is part of the job.” Now with the overstimulation from social media, many artists can get lost and confused while trying to figure out their place. However, Alicia added that once you find your passion, all things will fall into place. With navigating the ever-changing world of social media and art, Alicia mentioned, “The beauty about being an artist when there was no social media was purely because we loved it and gave you a total sense of satisfaction, peace and focus. All the thoughts in your mind are reduced to one motion of observation or a brush technique, and that is a reason why art is so therapeutic.” Currently working on a body art series of photographs, these pieces of work, which will be released shortly, use art as a medium to highlight each person’s personal stories and struggles. At 29 years old, Alicia is a brilliant artist, that has found a way to change her career path from studying human resources, and finding a life full of passion and creativity through art. In her span of seven years, Alicia has gone on and taken up many art forms, always exploring her abilities and never limiting herself, while also finding beauty in the little things. Etisalat Academy - Mirdiff Gems Founders School - Al Barsha +971 50 102 6265