Ongoing efforts by the Community Development Authority (CDA) to build strong partnerships across communities and consolidate social development efforts in Dubai got a major boost with a delegation from SAATHI (Society for Advocacy and Awareness Towards Holistic Inclusion) visiting the Dubai Early Childhood Development Centre (DECDC), a CDA initiative for Children with Disability. The visit followed an outreach programme organized at the Indian Consulate recently that accomplished the registration of more than 50 social clubs and associations affiliated to the Indian Community Welfare Committee (ICWC).
CDA, in line with its strategy to build social cohesion and enhance social development, has been reaching out to organisations representing the diverse communities in Dubai. The objective is to bring together social care providers on a common platform and empower them to lead social development of the communities they represent.
The visit was led by Mrs. Sangeeta Matta Verma, patron of SAATHI and wife of His Excellency Sanjay Verma, the Consul-General of India in Dubai and was received by Dr Omar Al Muthanna, CEO of the Social Regulatory and Licensing Department at CDA and Dr Bushra Al Mulla, Director of DECDC. The delegation undertook a tour of DECDC and was briefed on the various facilities, training methodologies and activities at the Centre.
SAATHI is a non-governmental organisation dedicated to serve the people with disabilities community in the UAE with special focus on awareness, advocacy, training, opportunities and projects.
“The Community Development Authority has made significant investment in developing our knowledge and capabilities in social development, moving further from just providing social care. The resources we have mobilised and our initiatives like DECDC will help plug existing social development gaps and enable organisations to provide strategic guidance to their target groups,” said Dr Omar Al Muthanna, CEO of the Social Regulatory and Licensing Department.
“DECDC has extensive knowledge in working with children with disability in Dubai. SAATHI has a similar focus and the two organisations can work together for wider outreach and capacity building,” added Dr Al Muthanna.
Dubai Early Childhood Development Center (DECDC) is a unique early intervention programme to provide comprehensive, family-focused, trans-disciplinary services to children with disability or at risk of developmental delays.
The centre has gathered an extensive knowledge bank and resources on international best practices in dealing with special needs children, assisting their families and developing social ecosystems that facilitate empowerment and inclusion of such children.