Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Professional Insight : Hope for Exceptional Needs

Hope for Exceptional Needs founder and director, Uzma Raheem agreed to a short interview with me for viewers of I am Special With Needs! YAAAY :-)

With this center being "the FIRST and ONLY" multi lingual center in Saudi Arabia and one of the older locations who cater to children who have special needs in Saudi, I felt this interview had to be done.

During the interview I got the chance to ask questions that were important to me and would be insightful and beneficial for parents as well as educators in the field of special education here in Saudi Arabia. Below are the questions asked and answered. If you feel you need anymore information, please contact Ms. Raheem and Hope For Exceptional Needs Rehabilitation Center using the contact information in "Services and Locations" tab.

How do you get the families involved in the center?

Ms. Raheem: " I have a very strict policy, we want the parents involvment".... "We have a communication guide that has everything in it".....  toliet training and even a behavior tracking sheet is attached....  parents should sign homework, all of these are marked daily .... "If there is a parent who is not involved more than 50% of the time they are given a first warning, second warning and after the third warning the space is given to someone else....what needs to be done is to have 2 parents involved with the special needs child"....

How long has your center been open?

Ms. Raheem: "14 years"

What have you or your center done to create awarness about special needs children?

Ms. Raheem: " When we have a workshop we dont charge people for it, we just hire a specialist then we send out flyers to schools and if the schools want there teachers to attend we invite them... we cant hold them on a regular basis because we don't have the of yet!"

What type of specialists are working at the center?

 Ms. Raheem: we have divided the services into 3 groups... the therapies, the specials and then the key skill areas.... physiotherapits, occupational therapists, speech and language pathology, hydro therapy and hippotherapy....  apart from that we have special arts which includeds religious studies which is optional then we have vocational training, like computers, arts and crafts and sports......

What about your outlook on special needs services here in Saudi Arabia, do you think the field is evolving, are you seeing more services or is it staying the same?

Ms. Raheem: " It has evolved tremendously. but unfortunelty people like occupational therapists, it seems there are none out there. Getting a visa for them (occupational therapists) is so difficult right now and finding them is difficult too unless they are in a centers like ours are going to suffer....those services are scarce and there are a lack of professionals...... and lack of professionalism."

How do you feel about professionals in this particular field?

Ms. Raheem: As the days go Im seeing less and less profesional attitudes from people....."

Walk me through a day with you as the director at the center.

Ms. Raheem: from the time I walk in  I have to make sure all the children are safe inside the center....being that we are pressed for time {throughout the day} I have to make sure we stick to our daily schedule.....I usually have interviews lined up, I have parents coming in for advise, new parents coming in for us to take in the child....this is a very difficult job and a very challenging job but the kids have made it so easy for me to continue.

What are the ages of the children  you serve at the center?

 Ms. Raheem: "the children range from 2 months old and the oldest girl is 26 and our oldest boy is 14"

Fund raisers and tuition, do you take donations?

Ms. Raheem: " we are not allowed to ask for donations.....if someone comes into the center to give to us we can take it"..... "the tuition is supposed to be 30,000 SR per year, {only a few families are paying this} but we end up taking the fee's according to what the parent is making for income..... 40% of the children are going for free because the parents can not afford it.

This was a very insightful interview, interesting and informative as well. Thank you very Much Mrs. Raheem for providing myself and the readers of I am Special With Needs with information about you and your center.  


No comments:

Post a Comment

Please be friendly and polite when responding to comments and posts!

The information, images, and/or data contained in the postings/ articles I design are copyrighten by Angelina Puryear and Helping Hands Educational Program,(the respective owners) and may not be distributed, modified, reproduced in whole or in part without prior permission of the website’s respective owner(s).