Thursday, June 11, 2009

Finding solace in the company of disabled kids

WHEN Uzma Raheem graduated in Turkey with a Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology, she had no idea that her destiny was to work with children with exceptional needs – her speciality was working with adult schizophrenics. She is from India but she came to Saudi Arabia as an infant with her parents and attended the International Indian School. “Saudi Arabia is home to me – I am not comfortable anywhere else.”

Her first job in Saudi Arabia was at Tender Loving Care, a rehabilitation center for Arabic speaking children. After nine months, she resigned: “I realized that there were no centers for children and families who cannot speak Arabic.” She began taking children for therapy at home on an hourly basis and her time was quickly filled up. “Then the summer holidays came and I found myself thinking: ‘What am I going to do? I am going to get so bored!’ So I started a small summer group in my house. We had nine children, all with a disability or disorder, and we just had fun together, there was nothing commercial about it.” For more go here.