Swedish Specialized Center for Special Needs is an early intervention center focusing on improving the quality of lives of People of Determination (PoD) and their families. In line with the UAE’s vision to create an inclusive city for all, we strive to do our part by collaborating and partnering up with various sectors and stakeholders whose primary focus is on the care and education of People of Determination. With our unique service model we have ensured that we cover a wide range of support systems to our partners to ensure the inclusion, education, awareness and empowerment of people of determination.
We strongly believe in the social model of disability, that says that people are disabled by barriers in society, not by their impairment or difference. Barriers can be physical, educational, or professional. Primarily, they can be caused by people's attitudes to difference, like assuming that people with different needs can't do certain things. The social model helps us recognize barriers that make life harder for people of determination. Removing these barriers creates equality and offers people of determination more independence, choice and control.
We base our work on this philosophy and therefore our services expand to different sectors in the community such as schools, nurseries, hospitals, clinics, universities, and private/government organizations. Part of what we do includes increasing awareness to educators, providing the right tools for specialists, introducing fresh graduates to the field of early intervention, supporting organizations in setting up inclusive settings, offering early intervention services to children, and family support.
We strongly believe that the family is the key to any child’s progress, and we have therefore created a unique program to empower families in leading a healthy lifestyle with their children, equipping them with the right tools and strategies to manage challenging behaviors, improve communication and learn new skills. Click here for more information on our program Family Take the Lead.
How are we different?
As part of our strong belief in inclusion and family involvement, we differ from other centers in our approach of therapy and early intervention. We have partnered up with a set of schools, nurseries and educational institutions in which our children are enrolled to ensure our presence and support on a consistent basis.
We ensure inclusion by supporting our children through their educational setting by:
-Offering therapy sessions in their educational setting (e.g. child’s school or nursery) rather than in a segregating setting (where child only interacts with a therapist).
-Creating a joint intervention program with the school/nursery where the child attends both his/her therapy sessions as well as hours in the mainstream school/nursery.
-Offering continuous support and training to teachers in order to make sure that the child can learn independently with the presence of the teacher alone in school/nursery.
-Holding regular meetings with teachers and school/nursery staff to oversee the child's intervention plan, and the overall progress of the child in the educational setting.
-Having one of our specialists on-site in the school/nursery on a regular basis to ensure the availability of support both to educators, parents and the child.
We ensure family involvement through:
-Our new launched program “Family Take The Lead” which is a program created specifically for the purpose of empowering families to empower their children. Click here for more information on FTL program.
-Involving family members in the therapeutic process through observations of the sessions, continuous training, meetings and supervision.
-Involving family members in each step of the child’s program, making necessary changes and adapting to the family’s needs and requirements.
-Providing the family with all therapy documentation of the child including the plan, programs, implementation techniques and training.
We ensure the comfort and safety of the child throughout our intervention process by:
- Following child’s lead and interests to manage behaviors and teach new skills.
- Introducing him/her to new therapy programs through a playful approach
- Transitioning the child to a mainstream school/nursery setting in a gradual manner involving techniques that take off any burden or stress on the child
- Working with the child using a natural environment approach so that s/he can generalize the skills learnt in any other setting.