Businesses for the disabled set up
Sharjah | By Abdullah Arbab | 25/11/2002

Sheikh Mohammed bin Saqr (2nd right), honouring Majid A. M. Al Usaimi at a ceremony. ©Gulf News

Handicapped personnel or people with special needs will man two photocopy and documentation centres as part of a project to involve them in mainstream employment.

The project was launched earlier by the Al Thiqah Club which celebrated its second anniversary of the 'Employment and Rehabilitation Project for Handicapped' on Saturday.

"A fast photocopy service centre for public and private departments at Jessico Centre in Yarmouk area, and another at Zayed University in Dubai, will soon be opened," said Hussain Ali Ghazal, head of Public Relations and Resources Development.

He explained the two projects are part of Al Thiqah Club's ongoing project to employ the handicapped. The project, launched two years ago, has been successful in finding gainful employment for 30 disabled people.

Some 15 photocopy centres and allied units have already been opened, with disabled people conducting back-office documentation services at universities, private establishments and elsewhere.

Apart from those at the club, these centres are at Sharjah University, Higher Colleges of Technology, and private establishments throughout the UAE.

Ghazal added the handicapped are also being trained to become insurance agents, with five centres having been opened in cooperation with Al Ain and Al Ahlia insurance companies.

"Achievements of the club in other areas included Back to University Book Fair and Al Ataa Exhibition, with the proceeds donated to the Social Empower-ment Foundation," he said.

Training sessions on computer and skills improvement were also organised. The club meanwhile won the Red Crescent competition for the handicapped, winning first place.

Saturday's event saw 30 employed handicapped people at the club, 23 public and government department officials, and the media being honoured while the club staff were rewarded for their hard work in making the project a success.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Undersecretary at the Ministry of Health, Director of Sharjah Medical District, and Chairman of the club, praised all the participants for making the project a major success.

Earlier last week he met a medical team from Dynamic Rehab and Medical Centre in Sharjah along with visiting experts from Groningen Hospital in Holland and officials from Sharjah University to discuss the early diagnosis of scoliosis, or deformity of the spine, which affects growing girls.

The meeting was held in cooperation with the Sharjah Medical District and Sharjah Education Department.

He urged all those concerned with the issue to offer back-up support to the project and enable scoliosis to be detected and rectified at an early stage.