At this year’s World Cup opening ceremony, appearing next to veteran actor Morgan Freeman was Ghanim Al Muftah, a disabled man who is also the Ambassador of this tournament. Ghanim and Freeman’s inspirational speeches surprised and touched millions of viewers. Ghanim Al Muftah has long inspired many Qataris. So who is this boy?
Lacking legs, excess will
Ghanim Al Muftah was born in 2002. The boy has congenital degenerative spinal syndrome (Caudal Regression Syndrome – CDS). A rare syndrome causes people to be born without a lower body. The spine and hips are not developed so all movement depends on the upper body.
Upon receiving the diagnosis of Ghanim’s birth defects and low survival rate, many people advised his mother to abort the child, because only then would the family and Ghanim himself not have to endure a miserable life afterward. . Despite everything, Ghanim’s parents were still determined to keep the baby. They silently promised that each of them would be both the right leg and the left leg for their child. Surrounded by his parents’ love, baby Ghanim was born.
After being born, Ghanim Al Muftah would normally have to use a wheelchair often, but he wanted to walk on his own with his hands as much as possible. Ghanim lives with the belief that you should take advantage of the things you were born with, instead of focusing too much on your physical shortcomings.
Like many other children with disabilities, Ghanim was teased, bullied and isolated by his classmates. However, his mother encouraged him to confide in his classmates, helping them understand his health condition and change society’s view of disadvantaged groups. He learned how to overcome obstacles by looking at the positive and practicing leadership. Positivity is the stepping stone for him to gradually become an excellent individual. Going further than his family’s expectations, he conquered everyone with his radiant smile, great confidence and generous personality.
In 2018, Ghanim, then only 16 years old, became a speaker at TEDxQatarUniversity. He talked about the syndrome he has and how he overcame challenges and fought the disease with optimism. Physical deficiency does not limit vision and leadership. Ghanim gradually became an inspirational speaker and an influential individual with more than 3 million followers on social networks.
Ghanim was an inspirational speaker at TEDxQatarUniversity.
Ghanim Al Muftah is currently majoring in political science at Loughborough University, aiming to become a diplomat with a profound voice and influence. Despite his disability, Muftah still actively participates in adventure sports such as scuba diving, skateboarding and mountain climbing. With soccer, Ghanim also wears shoes in his hands and plays fairly like a normal player. He climbed to the top of Mount Jebel Shams, the highest peak in the Hajar range, and set his ambition to one day conquer Everest.
Without a lower body, he still takes advantage of what he has to participate in sports activities.
Overcoming many mental challenges, Ghanim still had to face physical difficulties. To date he often undergoes surgery and various medical interventions. However, physical pain did not cool Ghanim’s ambition. It is this tenacious spirit that has won the hearts and admiration of millions of Qataris.
Go further in your career
From a young age, Ghanim achieved many impressive achievements. In 2009, he won the Unsung Hero award from the 21st Century Leaders Foundation. In the following years, he continuously won more noble titles such as peace ambassador, ROTA goodwill ambassador, and ambassador. brand for Qatar National Finance Authority (QFC). He was also chosen as the official spokesperson of the United Nations. Ghanim’s volunteer efforts in recent times have also been highly appreciated by everyone.
He doesn’t let any of his goals in life be limited by his legs.
In business, Ghanim has surprising organizational and administrative abilities. Currently, Ghanim Al Muftah is the youngest businessman in Qatar when he founded a chain of 5-star ice cream shops Gharissa Ice Cream, a company based in Qatar. Your Gharissa ice cream has been franchised. Through this decision, he hopes to expand his products abroad and throughout the Gulf Arab region.
He does not define an entrepreneur as simply someone who establishes a company, but rather someone who pioneers initiatives, takes business risks, and creates new jobs in the future, no matter how difficult. . This process is cultivated through critical thinking, innovation and continuous improvement. This is the entrepreneurial spirit that Ghanim aims for.
Commenting on the productivity of vulnerable groups in the labor market, Ghanim is confident that people with disabilities can create outstanding values for society if given worthy opportunities. Not only strong in life, Ghanim is also a true warrior at work.
“As a FIFA World Cup Ambassador, I want to send everyone a message of hope, harmony, peace and unity for all humanity,” he said at the opening ceremony of the 2022 World Cup.