The Department of Community Development in Abu Dhabi confirmed that Abu Dhabi’s Strategy for the People of Determination includes 30 initiatives that will be implemented over the next five years, with the participation of more than 28 specialised local and federal government entities, with the aim of making the Emirate of Abu Dhabi an inclusive, well-structured and empowering city for people of determination, in line with the department's vision, which is to provide a dignified life for all.
H.E Eng. Hamad Ali Al Dhaheri, Undersecretary of DCD, said: “In coordination with the partners, 30 initiatives will be implemented within 5 years to provide an environment that provides equal access to rights, services and opportunities in health and social care, education, work and finance opportunities, and innovation for the PoDs, in order to make Abu Dhabi a global, exemplary city in PoD empowerment.”
Al Dhaheri added: “The department is working on comparing practices globally and analysing the variables and developments of recent studies in the field of PoDs. Initiatives were created and carefully drawn according to the PoDs to ensure their rights and social perspective of disability, which confirms that it is not an inherent in the individual with disabilities but is the result of the environmental, behavioral, communicative, and organizational barriers that exist in community which PoDs encounter.
The Undersecretary of DCD added that the initiatives will cover 6 strategic key points, including health and rehabilitation, education, employment, social care, universal access, and enablers. In addition to the most important elements such as quality of services and sustainable financing, with the aim of achieving a message of support for the PoDs their families under an integrated system that provides high quality services to enable them to participate effectively in the community.
The health and rehabilitation key point includes the development of a unified, comprehensive and integrated evaluation framework for the PoDs, the early intervention program, the assistive technology programs. The education key point, a merge education model will be implemented in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, where as the employment key point will support the merge employment policy and programme.
With the participation of various specialised authorities, the Social Care Key point will include reviewing and synchronizing the local classification of disabilities with the United Arab Emirates Unified National Classification of Disabilities, targeting community awareness based on the human rights perspective of disability, the family support system and caregivers of PoDs, the sectors case management system and services for the PoDs and building a database of the people of determination in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.
The universal access key point will contribute to enhancing the access to buildings, facilities, transportation and housing in addition to electronic and smart systems, services, communications and information, including sports programmes, as well as access to cultural, entertainment and tourism programmes, and the development of a comprehensive system to meet the needs of people of determination and their families during travel trips via air or sea.
The Department of Community Development in Abu Dhabi, in addition to its role in leading the implementation of transformative initiatives in the Enablers key point, will provide the necessary support to all the participating teams, will ensure the coordination between the key points and provide supervision over the performance to guide the implementation process of the strategy towards achieving the strategic goals and desired outcomes.
It includes many initiatives, including the development of the change management plan to implement the strategy of the PoDs, establish an integrated care system for them and their families, reviewing legislative frameworks that affect the PoDs, developing a framework for evaluation and follow-up to implement the strategy in cooperation with international organizations.
In addition to developing the PoD governance sector, activating the role of the third sector to support them, strengthening the system of social protection and as a first phase cultivating human capital in all sectors, designing and implementing excellence awards in the field of people of determination, and making academic partnerships in the field of research, development and innovation for people of determination, and activating a system of sustainable financing for programs and services for people of determination.