On Sunday, July 11, 2021, the activities of the 29th round of the Summer Center organized by Sharjah City for Humanitarian Services (virtually) under the slogan (Summer Caravan) began until August 5. People with disabilities, their siblings, and their non-disabled colleagues would participate in an initiative that is the first of its kind within the center. In its previous years, the summer center was restricted to persons with disabilities and their siblings only.
Ms. Mona Abdul Karim, City Director, has confirmed that the main objective of the center, which the city has been organizing since 1986, under the directives of Her Excellency the Director-General, Sheikha Jamila bint Muhammad Al Qasimi, is to integrate children with disabilities and entertain them. It also aims to develop their talents and provide them with useful and enjoyable skills during the summer vacation.
She said, “Among the center’s goals is also to activate the role of the Foundation during crises, invest students’ free time in useful activities, discover and refine talents. It also opens the way for society members to volunteer in the Summer Center by providing various workshops. In addition, the city would activate the role of self-advocates by opening the way for them to participate, provide social support and enhance families rapprochement through educational and recreational activities and workshops”.
She explained that the center's activities for this year, like the last year, are organized remotely in order to ensure the safety of students. Persons with disabilities will participate in organizing and presenting some workshops alongside their teachers and colleagues in order to achieve inclusion and enhance their self-confidence and awareness of their social skill and capabilities in various fields.
Everyone will be keen to achieve social integration and harmony between students with disabilities and their brothers and friends through virtual activities, providing all purposeful entertainment, guidance, educational and moral services and giving them a time full of fun and entertainment and breaking the routine through various activities. This will help develop their abilities and skills.
The Summer Caravan is witnessing fruitful cooperation between the city, Art Foundation, Women’s Renaissance Society, Sharjah Museums Authority, and a number of volunteers. This would ensure the diversity of the workshops and provide the greatest amount of interest and entertainment for people with disabilities and their non-disabled peers.
Ms. Maymoona Hussein, Supervisor of the Summer Center, confirmed the organization of many various workshops. These workshops aim at providing children with multiple skills. Workshops include art crafts, recycling, music, sports, and entertainment.
Entertainment and cultural competitions
She said, “A weekly competition will be conducted in the form of asking a daily question, the answer of this question is from the workshops that were presented during the week. A link will be placed to register the name and the answer to calculate the points. The person will be eligible to enter the weekly draw if he answers three questions correctly out of five at least. The draw takes place on Thursday of every week”.
Masarat Center for Development and Empowerment
Dr. Hanadi Al-Suwaidi, Director of the Masarat Center for Development and Empowerment, spoke about the center's activities within the Summer Caravan. The city is organizing the Summer Center in cooperation with the (Bassmat Saadeh) Happy Fingerprint Volunteer Team, Sharjah Radio and Television Authority, Media Art Foundation for Children and Young People, Sharjah Ladies Club and Sharjah Museums Authority.
Among the most prominent of these activities are teaching students to use modern means correctly, developing the skills, knowledge and artisanship of students. There are also the slow animation workshop, which aims at teaching students animation techniques.
Khorfakhan City Branch
Ms. Mona Abdullah Karam, Director of the City Branch in Khorfakhan, has confirmed that among the most important activities that the Caravan will witness in the branch are entertainment, cultural and artistic competitions. In addition to Puppet Theater, home clay workshop, virtual trips, cooking workshop and sports event.
Kallba City Branch
Ms. Asma Al Darmaki has confirmed that the Summer Center will witness a rich and varied set of competitions and workshops, such as a music therapy workshop and a heritage workshop (Emirati identity), with the participation of the Parents’ Council in Kallba City. There will be virtual trips and recreational and cultural competitions. In cooperation with the Irtiqaa Foundation for the development of skills, a distinguished artistic workshop will be organized.