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Calendar sale to raise funds for Shafallah.

By Zia Khan/Staff Reporter It looks to be a simple sale, purchase on the face of it but there lies a worthy cause beneath.

Chili's Restaurant -- one of the city's most frequented Western-styled eateries -- yesterday launched the sale of a special 2013 calendar for donations to an institute in Doha working for the rehabilitation of children with special needs.

Shafallah Centre for Children with Special Needs, an institute established by HH Sheikha Moza bint Nasser back in 1998, currently has more than 700 kids from all nationalities residing in Qatar.

These children with some mental or physical handicap get specialised care for their rehabilitation.

Though mainly funded by the government of Qatar, some private donors do contribute to the institute that is one of the several initiatives launched by HH Sheikha Moza in the field of education and healthcare.

Chili's Restaurant put on display the calendars featuring all the special events to take place in 2013 at its main outlet inside the Lagoon Mall at West Bay.

Eva Wallbruch, Business Development and Office Manager at the International Food Concept Company that runs Chili's, said the calendars--each one of them for QR59--would also be on sale at all other branches of the restaurant.

"We take pride in contributing to a cause...we have been doing it in the past and will continue in the future," Eva said at the launch also attended by some children from Shafallah, their caretakers and the management of the centre.

Shafallah Managing Director Heyam Nasser al-Suwaidi said more than 500 caretakers and teachers including psychologists were taking care of a little over 700 children at the centre, making it an ideal ratio.

"Every kid at our centre gets individual care," she said, describing how efforts are made to ensure that these children become regular members of the society.

And these efforts have just started to bear fruit, said Heyam, revealing that some of the children have been rehabilitated.

She added that the most encouraging aspect was that the general attitude of the society towards these kids had changed manifold in recent years and people were now accepting them as reality and welcoming them.

"It is nice to see this change...people now think these children have rights and should get what they deserve," Suwaidi explained.

Suwaidi said the reaction of parents to the illness of their kids normally varies from shock to denial before they realise the reality.

Gulf Times Newspaper 2012

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Publication:Gulf Times (Doha, Qatar)
Geographic Code:7QATA
Date:Dec 20, 2012
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