RIYADH: Youth on the autism spectrum in Saudi Arabia are showcasing their talents through a range of initiatives including the Hall 4 play, which took place on Friday in Riyadh.
The Charitable Society of Autism Families partnered with the Theater and Performing Arts Commission to host the Hall 4 play, which runs until Sunday at the Al-Rayyan Complex Theater of the Technical and Vocational Training Corp.
The play recalls comic and literary characters from contemporary and historical Arab works through a story that takes place in a train station heading to the future. The event runs from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m.
The partnership aims at supporting individuals and members on the autism spectrum as well as their families. It also looks to increase awareness and knowledge in Saudi society to enable people with autism to lead healthy and active lives.
Prince Saud bin Abdulaziz bin Farhan Al-Saud, chairman of the Charitable Society of Autism Families, told Arab News: “With partnerships, and specifically with this one, we aim at raising awareness of those diagnosed with autism and supporting them and their families.
“We were thrilled to see how our young members showed interest and participated in the play. I am very proud to see our young talented members growing and evolving with us in this journey, and so happy to see the smile and pride on their families’ faces. I hope that the show will be as delightful and happy as our members and that everyone will enjoy it,” he added.
Established in 2009, SAF has launched a range of programs and initiatives to support youth with autism and their families. The society’s programs include the Kafalah initiative, Society Stories, Psychological Guidance, Sports and Leisure, Rishat Tayf, Families Training, and Training and Recruitment.
Reducing stigmas around autism can be achieved by raising awareness and knowledge in the Kingdom.
Prince Saud bin Abdulaziz bin Farhan Al-Saud, Chairman, Charitable Society of Autism Families
Prince Saud said: “We at SAF have established numerous partnerships with both governmental and private sectors which resulted in providing autistic individuals with great opportunities. We are proud of our partnership with the Ministry of Culture which enabled autistic youth to bring out their acting talents and show them to the world, and we look forward to many long-lasting partnerships with other organizations that will have a good impact on our society in Saudi Arabia and support youth with autism and their families.”
He added that reducing stigmas around autism can be achieved by raising awareness and knowledge in the Kingdom.
“Part of our core objectives are to raise social awareness and support the society’s institutional structure, which can be achieved through establishing partnerships with the government and private sectors involving our dear members and their families.”
He added that there are numerous plans on the agenda for the future, saying: “We firmly believe that, with the proper training, awareness, knowledge and continuous support, families with autism cases can seamlessly adapt to dealing with their members’ autistic cases to lead healthy and active lives.”