Independent Living Training teaches everyday life skills and is often provided by people with disabilities. Independent Living training is useful for individuals with disabilities and community organizations to promote the full inclusion of people with disabilities at all levels.

Saaya Center for Independent living took initiative to organize awareness Sessions on Disability and Independent Living supported by HANDS Pakistan under the umbrella of CBID Network on a Monthly basis for persons with disabilities, women with disabilities, children with disabilities & their parents, volunteers, NGOs DPOS and Community Mobilizers and the local community.

Keeping the concept of independent living and disability Saaya has organized monthly awareness Session on 18th July, 2018 at Saaya Center for Independent living located in I-10/4 Islamabad.

The session was started with recitation of Holy Quran. Formally Ms Saima Aslam (Program Manager Women with disabilities Saaya Association) welcomed all the participants. She explicate upon the purpose of organizing this session. She invited Mr. Amir khan for the recitation of Holy Quran, after this the she invited Mr. Karman Khan (Program Manager Saaya Association), He introduced himself and also gave the brief introduction of Saaya. He also asked all participants to present his/her name and designation so everyone could know about each other.

He explained that this session is to create an understanding and conceptual clarity on disability. The session was also conducted to motivate persons with disabilities and especially their families regarding their needs and living priorities. Also he explained how to take care of Persons with Disabilities so that they may spend their life in a dignified manner. He also explained to participants regarding the understanding of disability. He said, including those who have long-term physical, mental, intellectual or sensory impairments which in interaction with various barriers may hinder their full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others survive as an honourable individual without any dependence upon others as well as to eliminate the factor of sympathetic attitude in Society for persons with disabilities.

The overall objectives were:

Understanding on disability, an intangible clarity.

To mainstream persons with Disability in development.

To promote an inclusive development approach.

Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities to become agents of change.

To motivate & counsel Parents of children with disabilities.

Parents of children with disabilities always feel worried and seem tense regarding the future of their children. Ms Saima invited Mr Asim Zafar. He shared that the estimated one billion people living with disabilities worldwide face many barriers to inclusion in many key aspects of society. As a result, people with disabilities do not enjoy access to society on an equal basis with others, which includes areas of transportation, employment, and education as well as access to justice. He said that persons with disabilities must be able to fulfill their role in society and participate on an equal basis with others. It is important to focus on the ability and not on the disability of an individual. Often, the societal image of persons with disabilities is impacted by attitudes based on stigma and discrimination, as well as archaic ideas about disability and persons with disabilities that are often the greatest barrier to their full and equal participation in society and development on an equal basis with others. He also highlighted comprehensive details about the issues that persons with disabilities are facing in their daily life activities; it is time to create awareness among general people and to train persons with disabilities accordingly so that they can survive as independent human beings. He said that the following areas need to be addressed at all levels. He highlighted the point that although it is very difficult for parents of children with disabilities to manage the life of their children’s being Muslims we have a strong belief on our CREATOR & Allah knows each and everything and our future, so parents should be brave and motivate & groom their children as a perfect human being so they live their life with dignity and pride.

Ms Saima concluded the session with these words that no one is worthless in this world. We all have the same rights. Equality being the very basic human right is the sole etiquette to be understood and practised in society by the society.

In the end, refreshment was served to the participants.