KARACHI: The Ida Rieu Schools and Colleges for Blind and Deaf and NED University of Engineering and Technology collaborated to organise an international conference on higher education for deaf in Pakistan (HEDP 2022) at the Ida Rieu Complex near Mazar-i-Quaid here on Monday.
Over the years, Ida Rieu has emerged as Pakistan’s premier institution providing special education and training from montessori to masters level. It provides quality education, assistive technologies, vocational training, health care, counselling services, sports and fitness training, job placements and other allied facilities to their students free of cost.
The year 2022 is the centenary year of Ida Rieu and the conference marked one century of dedicated services to special people at this institution of learning.
The purpose of the conference was to bring experts and stakeholders together for consultation on higher education for the deaf in Pakistan. The conference had an inauguration session followed by a technical session.
Murad offers Ida Rieu building, infrastructure, funds for running educational facilities for differently-abled children
Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah, who was the chief guest, acknowledged the achievements of the school in their over a century of service in Karachi and offered them to partner with his government.
The Sindh government would provide them building, infrastructure and funds for running such educational facilities for differently-abled children in all divisional headquarters in the first phase and in district headquarters in its second phase, he added.
The chief minister said that education was the most important tool in society, one which paved the way to the door of opportunities. “There cannot be growth, learning, or development without it,” he said.
He appreciated the services of Ida Rieu’s empowering differently-abled children while ensuring inclusiveness and equality.
“Each and every one of you is playing a lead role in creating a more accessible, and inclusive Pakistan,” he said, adding that thousands of students with special abilities have had the chance to develop their talents and make their unique contributions to the world.
“It is thanks to them that our country grows stronger and more vibrant,” he said.
“Our obligation as a community is to continue to work and provide quality service for the differently-abled. Alongside education, developing and nurturing their skills, hobbies and talents are salient for their personal growth,” he said.
The CM also said that a conference like this would surely help in charting a path for their growth. He said that his government has taken many legislative steps to ensure the rights of persons with special abilities.
He added that many other world-class projects have been successfully executed to facilitate and develop persons in both Sindh’s urban and rural parts.
“It is our objective that our specially-abled people are empowered to their full potential and provided equal participation in Pakistan’s development process so that our goals of achieving equality and inclusiveness are realised for all citizens of Pakistan,” he said.
Commending the services provided by Ida Rieu, he said that the Sindh government has school buildings in every divisional and district headquarter, but they are lacking in expertise. He offered the Ida Rieu to come over and run government schools for differently-abled persons in every divisional headquarter of the province. “We will provide you funds and other facilities,” he said.
Earlier, the chief minister visited the school’s classrooms and mingled with children busy in IT education, arts, and other activities.
He appreciated a differently-abled child’s talent as he sketched his portrait with a pencil.
Federal Minister Shazia Marri, CM’s Special Assistant Sadiq Memon, NED University’s Vice Chancellor Dr Sarosh Lodi, Dr Panjwani and others also spoke on the occasion.
Published in Dawn, September 20th, 2022