The Middle East’s largest expo for people with determination has garnered strong support from leading community support centres from across the UAE and the GCC region, with more than 40 centres and support organisations confirming their participation at the 3-day event.
AccessAbilities Expo 2017 will be held from November 7-9, 2017, under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, Chairman of Dubai Airports, Chairman and Chief Executive of Emirates Airline and Group, at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre.
The Expo aims to integrate persons with disabilities into the society in line with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to build hope, build life, build the future and make people from all walks of life happy and is driven by the goal set by His Highness Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Executive Council, to make Dubai one of the world’s friendliest cities for persons with disabilities by 2020.
The centres and support organisations will explore the latest assistive technology they can implement to enhance the lives of their students and members and, at the same time, give an opportunity to exhibitors and visitors to learn about the latest effective methodologies to ensure better learning for the disabled and measures to empower them to lead independent lives.
Among the centres participating in the 2nd edition of the expo are Dubai Autism Center, Al Noor Training Centre for Persons with Disabilities, Sharjah City for Humanitarian Services, Al Tareq Rehabilitation & Autismus Center, Al Thiqah Club, SEDRA Foundation for Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities, Dubai Club for Disabled, Dubai Center for Special Needs, Enable LLC, Manzil, Mawaheb from Beautiful People, Modern Alternative Education, Stars for Special Abilities and Early Intervention, Gulf Disability Society, Autism Support Network, , UAE Down Syndrome Association from the UAE; Jordanian Club for the Deaf, Cerebral Palsy Foundation from Jordan; King Salman Centre for Disability Research, Nafeh Al Amal Volunteer Group, Saudi Schizophrenia Charity Association, Charitable Society of Autism Families from Saudi Arabia; Oman Paralympic Committee from Oman; First Step Team, Group Fakher Al Watan Volunteer Team and The Team of Will and Challenge from Kuwait.
AccessAbilities Expo is being organised by Reed Exhibitions Middle East and Nadd Al Shiba PR and Event Management.
Daniyal Qureshi, Group Exhibitions Director, Reed Exhibitions Middle East, said: “Disability centres across the GCC are using different types of technologies and methods to educate and enable their students and learning about these would be highly useful for others, who can implement them. By bringing assistive technology providers and actual users together on a common platform, AccessAbilities Expo aims to contribute to empowering and integrating people with disabilities into the society. The 2nd edition of AccessAbilities will bring the world’s leading assistive technology manufacturers and suppliers, decision-makers and exhibitors from across government and private sectors from over 40 countries and we are expecting over 40 per cent growth in exhibition, display area, sports activities and conference space this year.”
The inaugural expo in 2016 was remarkably successful with more than 6,000 people, including individuals with disabilities, their families, educationists, and experts from different sectors such as healthcare, technology and infrastructure attending the exhibition and over 150 exhibitors from 41 countries showcasing the latest products and services at the event.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), one billion people, or 15 per cent of the world’s population, experience some form of disability, and over one-fifth of the estimated global total, up to 200 million people, experience significant disabilities.
The UAE is taking numerous initiatives aimed at empowering individuals with disabilities and integrating them into the society. The ‘My Community-A City for Everyone’ initiative, is Dubai Government's strategic goal to be the world’s friendliest city for people with disabilities by the year 2020.