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Khalid bin Zayed inaugurates new Al Ain Autism Center

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ABU DHABI, 15th November, 2020 (WAM) — His Highness Sheikh Khalid bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of Zayed Higher Organisation for People of Determination (ZHO), inaugurated the new Al Ain Autism Center, which is affiliated with ZHO. It was built by the Abu Dhabi General Services Company ‘Musanada’, covering a total area of over 10,000 square meters, at a cost of around AED 69 million, and with the capacity for 178 students with autism. His Highness toured the new centre accompanied by Mugheer Khamis Al Khaili, Chairman of the Department of Community Development, and His Excellency Abdullah Abdulalee Alhumaidan, Secretary-General of ZHO, to evaluate the work carried out and learn about the care and rehabilitation services provided by the centre. Moza Al-Salami, Director of Al Ain Autism Center, outlined the facilities, as well as the centre’s training and education programmes, which aim to develop the skills and capabilities of its autistic students with a view to increasing their social inclusion and empowering them to become active members of society involved in the nation’s development. The opening ceremony was attended by Naema Al Mansouri, Member of the UAE’s Federal National Council, Eng. Khalid Abdulaziz Al Rajhi, CEO of Musanada, Abdulla Al Sahi, Undersecretary of the Department of Municipalities and Transport (DMT), Abdulla Al Kamali, the Executive Director for People of Determination Sector at ZHO, Nafaa Al Hammadi, the Executive Director for Support Services Sector at ZHO, Mouza Ahmed Al Salami, Director of Al Ain Autism Center, and a number of representatives from government and private sector entities. His Highness offered his sincere gratitude to His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, and to His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, for their support of the organisation, its centres, and the individuals that it represents in order to achieve ZHO’s vision and the leadership’s ambitions for People of Determination. In a press statement at the inauguration ceremony of the new centre in Al Ain, His Highness praised the invaluable support the nation’s leaders have offered to ZHO, which has contributed to its extensive achievements. ZHO continually strives to provide the finest care and support for People of Determination, ensuring that they have the full backing of the nation’s leaders, which is reflected in the enactment of legislation and the issuance of laws that guarantee their equal rights, and highlight the nation’s humanitarian efforts. His Highness praised the cooperation between ZHO and the Abu Dhabi General Services Company ‘Musanada’, which has led to the completion of projects in Abu Dhabi, including the Al Ain Autism Center. This in turn supports ZHO’s mission to provide high-level services to those enrolled at the centre and on its waiting lists. He thanked Musanada for their efforts and for their cooperation with ZHO. Eng. Khalid Abdulaziz Al-Rajhi, CEO of Musanada, said: "The construction of the Al Ain Autism Center falls within the framework of projects that serve the nation’s People of Determination. This centre will support an important segment of the Al Ain community, who require specialised care and support services. The center is an important educational and training facility, allowing individuals with autism to integrate into society, as well as helping to highlight their creativity and their capacity to contribute to the nation’s development process." He outlined that the Al Ain Autism Center covers two floors, and includes 36 study rooms that can accommodate 178 students, in addition to 17 treatment rooms, four teaching rooms, and two medical examination rooms. The centre also includes a gym, a music room, two drama rooms and an art room, as well as a library, cafeteria, swimming pool, indoor and outdoor specialised play areas, staff rooms and a range of additional amenities. Al-Rajhi affirmed Musanada’s full commitment to supporting environmental sustainability in accordance with the highest international standards by applying best practices around the preservation of natural resources, enhancing environmental protection and reducing energy consumption. Abdullah Abdulalee Al Humaidan, Secretary General of ZHO, explained that the organisation derives its vision from Abu Dhabi government’s key societal goals. These involve providing education, training and treatment to support People of Determination, in order to facilitate their social inclusion and enable them to become active members within families and society. He said: "The establishment of the new Al Ain Autism Center as an affiliate of Zayed Higher Organisation for People of Determination is in line with our leadership’s commitment to enhancing the provision of social support and healthcare facilities, as well as the development of appropriate facilities for People of Determination that incorporate specialists and dedicated resources in a way that help empower them and enable their social inclusion." Abdullah Alhumaidan added: "as a result of the invaluable support and follow-up of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, and under the supervision of His Highness Sheikh Khaled bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of Zayed Higher Organisation, ZHO has realised many goals and is keen to continue to establish additional affiliated centres throughout the emirate of Abu Dhabi as part of ZHO’s efforts to provide care and support services for People of Determination in line with best international practices". He stressed that Zayed Higher Organization for People of Determination continues to develop and improve, with the aim of further advancing the services it provides to People of Determination across all the organisation’s affiliated care and rehabilitation centers, through the application of scientific approaches in order to enhance the delivery of services. ZHO is also keen on attracting leading international expertise in the field to enhance its knowledge and experience in order to fulfil the organisation’s vision and help it achieve its humanitarian goals. He thanked Musanada, praising their cooperation with ZHO in order to complete the project and enable the expansion of ZHO’s care and services for People of Determination in the emirate of Abu Dhabi. He noted that the completion of this project will help extend support to individuals on ZHO’s waiting lists. He stressed the importance of collaboration between all government and private sector entities in providing support and care to People of Determination, in order to help them effectively integrate and contribute to the nation’s development. In September 2018, the Al Ain Autism Center obtained an international certificate from the British Autism Society in recognition of the specialised services it provides; a remarkable achievement for the organisation and a follow-on from the Abu Dhabi Autism Center, which also received this accolade in 2015. Al Ain Autism Center currently serves 89 students, including 15 early intervention cases. The decision to transfer these services to a dedicated center was made in 2016, to ensure that specialised services would be available to people in Al Ain requiring them for individuals and children with autism.