DOHA, QATAR, 2nd APRIL 2017: During the First Gulf Region Education Assistive Technology Conference 2017 (GREAT), the Qatar Assistive Technology Center (MADA) signed three partnership agreements with local, regional and global organisations, at the Qatar National Convention Centre (QNCC) in Doha. These strategic agreements will help provide the necessary technological tools and information required to develop and enhance education curriculum specifically designed for PWD. The partnerships will also promote an adoption of the latest practices in assistive technology within the field of education.
"As part of our commitment to support Persons with Disabilities in Qatar, we have signed a number of strategic agreements to further develop and improve the education for PWD. These Memorandums of Understanding will play an important role in developing the assistive technology sector in Qatar and in the region, through implementations and advisory on the best practices when it comes to education for PWD," said Maha Al Mansouri, CEO of MADA. "These agreements will further support our commitment towards connecting People with Disabilities to ICT. In addition, it is a means to strengthen, integrate and empower this group of people in society, as well as bring awareness to the most innovative practices used in the field of assistive technology. Furthermore, supporting the Qatar National Vision 2030, which reflects the needs and aspirations of the Qatari community in general, and for Persons with Disabilities."
The first agreement was signed with the Training and Educational Development Center from the Ministry of Education and Higher Education in Qatar. The agreement was to cooperate and help students with different abilities through the provision of assistive technology and strengthen the number of support teachers in Qatar. MADA will ensure there is orderly and fair access to assistive technology for students with disabilities in schools, through training support teachers at MADA center. Furthermore, MADA will supervise the training and e-learning workshops, focusing on assistive technology through the MADA portal. In addition to, providing trainers and external consultants, training venues, meeting opportunities, exchanging of experiences for trainees, direct and individual supervision of training and evaluation files.
The second agreement was signed with the Sharjah City for Humanitarian Services in the United Arab Emirates. This agreement will help raise the level of awareness and training for specialised teams and workers in the field of assistive technology. This will include programs that will raise awareness and bring education, as well as upgrades in the services provided to users of assistive technology, and further cooperation in scientific research and development initiatives. MADA will facilitate the enrollment of courses and workshops at MADA facilities, and enable access to programs, events, and activities through various means of communication. Moreover, MADA will provide support, and distance counseling for children enrolled in the Support Center in Sharjah City for Humanitarian Services or referrals. In addition, guidance and support will be provided during the selection and usage of assistive technology with beneficiaries.
The third agreement during the GREAT conference was signed with the US Assistive Technology Industry Association. The organisation is a leader in the development of assistive technology and an organiser of many events and activities worldwide. The aim of the partnership is to promote technology education and training programs in Qatar, as well as provide optimal services for Persons with Disabilities and professionals who supervise them. The agreement will help launch training programs with internationally recognised certificates. As a result of this agreement, the US Assistive Technology Industry Association will create a professional development plan throughout the year, which will include activities and materials related to assistive technology. This plan will be aligned with the MADA training program and will help expand the availability of professional development resources in assistive technology online and through the availability of resources in Arabic.