Prince Sultan bin Salman praises philanthropy for the disabled

Prince Sultan bin Salman
Updated 21 February 2017
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Prince Sultan bin Salman praises philanthropy for the disabled

RIYADH: Prince Sultan bin Salman, co-founder and chairman of the board of trustees of the King Salman Center for Disability Research (KSCDR), said the center enjoys the patronage of a large clientele that is ready to assist a worthy cause.
He praised “the interest of philanthropists and members of the private sector to serve deserving people.”
He said the center’s founders include individuals, charitable associations, companies, government institutions, ministries and banks.
Membership also includes parties from outside the Kingdom, such as Abraaj Capital, Dubai, and HAMG Group.
Prince Sultan said the institution was the outcome of the philanthropic mind of King Salman, who wanted to serve Islam by helping the disabled by offering rehabilitation programs and the necessary education and skills for them to continue their lives like others do.
The prince said the idea to establish KSCDR came from the urgent need to confront, reduce and avoid the incidence of disability, as well as treat it and provide superior support services for the disabled to easily integrate them into society.
“Arab and Islamic countries suffer from a severe shortage in the field of scientific research into disability, which motivated us to establish this center,” said Prince Sultan.
“We at the King Salman Center look forward to establishing the best scientific applications… and achieving positive development for persons with disabilities and their families.”
He said King Salman’s interest in helping the disabled comes not only from his magnanimity, but also from his vision of the importance of investing in the development of all sectors of society, and providing equal facilities and services for all citizens.
The prince added that scientific research is the true criteria for the progress of nations, an urgent necessity and an important element for a decent life.
“The contemporary world is witnessing astonishing progress in all fields of scientific and technological developments,” he said. “Scientific research is the main ingredient in civilized society.”
The center’s achievements include introducing a care system and early screening program for new-borns, which the prince said has helped around 930 children.
In cooperation with King Abdul Aziz City for Science and Technology, King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center, the Ministry of Labor and Social Development, and others, KSCDR has organized programs to rehabilitate disabled people so they can enter the labor market.
The prince said there is also an economic integration program for the disabled in collaboration with the Islamic Development Bank, the Saudi Bank for Credit and Savings, the Health Ministry, King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center, King Saud University, Harvard University, and the scholarship program of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques in collaboration with the Education Ministry.
On King Salman’s initiative, an endowment project has been set up that includes a five-star hotel and apartments on an area covering 7,264 square meters in the Diplomatic Quarter in Riyadh. It will include a number of restaurants, a swimming pool and a health club.


Saudi women at the wheel: the first 24 hours

Shoura Council member Lina Almaeena getting ready to driver her car as Saudi Arabia lifted the ban on women driving iib Saturday midnight. (AN photo by Huda Bashatah)
Updated 24 June 2018
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Saudi women at the wheel: the first 24 hours

  • The General Security has already reported that it will be providing the required provisions for female drivers in Saudi Arabia.
  • Private insurance company Najm, in partnership with the General Department of Traffic, has hired 40 women and trained them to respond to road accidents involving female drivers.

JEDDAH:  Women around the Kingdom have turned the ignition in their cars for the first time on their home soil and hit the roads throughout the country. They have gone on social media to express their joy at this monumental occasion which has officially changed the course of their lives. 

Saudi Shoura Council member Lina Almaeena was among the very first women to drive in the Kingdom as soon as the clock struck midnight. 

Women in their cars enthusiastically and wholeheartedly cheered on their fellow female drivers on this memorable night. 

“I feel proud, I feel dignified and I feel liberated, said Almaeena.

She told Arab News that the event was changing her life by “facilitating it, making it more comfortable, making it more pleasant, and making it more stress-free.”

Almaeena urges all drivers to follow the traffic and road safety rules. “What’s making me anxious is the misconduct of a lot of the drivers, the male drivers. Unfortunately they’re not as disciplined as they should be. Simple things such as changing lanes and using your signals — this is making me anxious.”

Almaeena highlighted the significance of being a defensive driver. “I’m confident: I’ve driven all around the world when I travel, especially when I’m familiar with the area. It’s really mainly how to be a defensive driver because you have to be.”

On how society is adapting to this major change, Almaeena said: “Tomorrow is the first day, mentally and psychologically it already had that shift. As I mentioned, it’s a paradigm shift. In perception and how they view women, their capabilities — as equal partners. 

“Mentally it’s already there, and physically we will see — as we start — more and more encouragement for both men and women. Even some of the women who weren’t feeling comfortable about driving, it’s going to be encouraging for them, in a live demonstration and evidence that women can do it.” 

As roads around Saudi Arabia have been inhabited by a new breed of drivers, how has this affected the traffic flow in Saudi Arabia?

 “As of 12 a.m., the implementation of the Supreme Court order to enable women to drive and the implementation of traffic regulations to both men and women is officially in effect," said Col. Sami Al-Shwairkh, the official spokesman for General Security in the Kingdom. "The security and traffic status on all roads and areas around the Kingdom have been reported as normal. There have not been any records from our monitoring of any unusual occurrences on the road throughout the Kingdom.” 

To commemorate this occasion, as seen in the pictures circulating on social media, traffic policemen were handing roses to female drivers early on Sunday.

The General Security has already reported that it will be providing the required provisions for female drivers in Saudi Arabia.

Private insurance company Najm, in partnership with the General Department of Traffic, has hired 40 women and trained them to respond to road accidents involving female drivers.

The General Directorate of Traffic has completed all preparations to employ women on the country’s traffic police force.