It said the project would have its mark on social development in Egypt.
Taking the south of Cairo 15 May City as its location, the new center had already started taking shape last month, Islamic Relief Worldwide said during a press conference it held in Cairo in the presence of actress Hanan Turk and actor Tarek Dosoki, both Islamic Relief Worldwide ambassadors in the Middle East.
A host of media, child rights advocates, and society service activists attended the conference.
Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Islamic Relief Egypt Mohamed Al Alfy said Islamic Relief Worldwide started paying special attention to children with special needs since 2002 when it launched four small units for this end in the south of Cairo neighborhood of Helwan.
He said as the numbers of disabled children grew and the burdens on their families increased, Islamic Relief decided to establish an integrated center for the care of children and youth with special needs.
Al Alfy said the center contained an early intervention section; a rehabilitation section; a family support and development section, and a social support and development section.
“This is a pioneering project that offered free services for children and youth with special needs and their families,” Al Alfy said.
He noted that the center is keen to expand its services, reduce its long beneficiary waiting lists, and offer more support for families by offering them training. Al Alfy said the center also seeks to improve the education offered children and youth with special needs through several social classes and summer activities.
“Together with this a comprehensive assessment of the performance of the children is made in order to settle on appropriate intervention programs to develop the children and hone their skills,” Al Alfy said. “This happens through special capacity building sessions that seek to strengthen the value of cooperative work inside the children and open the way for the exchange of experiences among them,” he added.
He said the sessions include conversational ones and others for psychological and physiotherapy.
Hanan Turk said she felt proud to be an effective participant in supporting projects launched by Islamic Relief, whether this was inside Egypt or outside it.
She lauded the management of Islamic Relief Worldwide for diversifying its projects, citing the center for children with special needs as an example.
The Egyptian actress referred to her participation in a visit organized by Islamic Relief to the Gaza Strip last month.
She called for rallying up Arab energies with the aim of offering the necessary financial, moral, and scientific support for the people of Gaza who were badly hurt by the latest Israeli aggression on the Strip in November last year.
Actor Tarek Al Dosoki dwelt on Islamic Relief’s keenness on presenting comprehensive healthcare for children with special needs and their families.
He particularly applauded the desire of Islamic Relief to create a comprehensive database of specialists in all fields of children’s disability in a professional manner.
Al Dosoki referred to a recent agreement Islamic Relief signed with UNHCR for a 5.5 million-pound donation that will go for Syrian refugees in Egypt. The project serves 2,500 Syrian families who meet the criteria specified by UNHCR.
Al Alfy concluded the conference by lauding Islamic Relief’s supporters everywhere. He said Islamic Relief has been offering support for children with special needs for a long time, even before it started establishing the aforementioned center.
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