Sharjah City for Humanitarian Services transforms lives of people with disabilities

Group of students with hearing disability make a symbol of I love you in sign language at AccessAbilities ExpoDubai, February 10, 2016: The strong support, education, care, training and rehabilitation facilities by Sharjah City for Humanitarian Services (SCHS) have transformed lives of thousands of individuals having disabilities.

A group of individuals with hearing disability, who received support from the non-profit organization, shared their experiences at the ongoing AccessAbilities Expo 2016.

Zainab Ibrahim, an Omani national, who recently completed her degree in interior designing, studied from Kindergarten at Al Amal School and Kindergarten for the Deaf, under the umbrella of SCHS, is today a role model for her peers.

Sharing her story in sign language through Safi Naz Hussain, Translator at the resources centre in Sharjah University, she said: “It was very easy for me to adjust when I shifted to a regular school after grade 9. The support of SCHS has been with me all throughout and thanks to this support I am today ready to take up a job.”

Proud of her achievements, Zainab said: “There are many people with hearing disability who tell me they see me as a role model and wish to continue their education. I feel fortunate I have had a strong support and the will to pursue my studies.”

Bayan Suwaidan said: “My school has enabled me to not only communicate in sign language, I can lip-read and SCHS conducts regular check-ups for the hearing aid, they supported me in my cochlear implant and even fund my college education.  I now look forward to becoming a successful graphic designer.”

Moving to a new environment can be a highly challenging. However, Isra Abdul Kareem, from Jordan, who is pursuing Social Sciences degree, said she was able to easily adjust after she moved from Jordan with the help and support from SCHS.  “I came from Jordan in grade 11. Through SCHS, I not only got consultations, hearing aid, I received tremendous support which helped me overcome all the challenges one faces to adjust to a new environment. “

Attributing his success to the support of his teachers and the facilities provided at school, Abdel Salam Zourab, who is studying Business Administration, said: “I am highly grateful to His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, and Sheikha Jameela Bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, Director General of Sharjah City for Humanitarian Services,  for their inspiration and vision, which has helped not only  me but thousands and thousands of people with disabilities.”

Zourab, who started with Al Amal School from Kindergarten, said his teachers encouraged him to develop his skills in all spheres. Active in pantomime and also modelling, the 25-year-old, said: “There are many deaf people who stay at home but I would encourage all of them to pursue their studies. Today, with this approach, I look forward to a bright future.”

Pursuing his Architecture, Ammar Dehab, from Sudan, said a friendly and supportive environment at school under the umbrella of SCHS has helped him understand his career choices and he is pursuing a relatively different stream. “My school education gave me the skills and courage to pursue what I like to.  I find it very easy to interact with my professors and fellow classmates at the university.”

Sharjah City for Humanitarian Services is the UAE’s first organization for people with disabilities. SCHS provides education, training and rehabilitation for individuals having different types of disabilities and has eight organisations under its umbrella.

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