Wanted: good Samaritans

Wanted: people who can help the less privileged, lend a helping hand to those who cannot walk or make a difference to the world that we live in.
The world needs people like you. It is learnt there is a scarcity of volunteers who can support various charity organisations in the Sultanate, which is taking a toll on local charity initiatives, hampering their efforts to reach the needy. HH Sayyid Faisal bin Turki al Said, Director-General of Marketing and Media at Ithraa, Oman’s Public Authority for Investment Promotion and Export Development and a forerunner for various such initiatives, said in a recent interview, that there was a dearth of people who can lend their time for charity initiatives.
“We need people with a systematic approach and can spare some quality time for the less privileged and less fortunate.”
According to him, there is a shortage of such people who can spare some time for both charity and awareness initiatives.
“There are a lot of people who are willing to volunteer for such causes, but what we need are people with a systematic approach,” he said, adding: “It is a challenging task.”
Most of the charity agencies, especially the Oman Charity Organisation, Al Noor Association for the Blind, Association for the Early Intervention of Children with Disabilities, Dar al Atta and Oman Cancer Association, among others, are run with the help of those with sheer commitment to society.
An active charity worker said volunteers are needed to go out and talk to people, stakeholders and supporters, as well as bring them on a common platform to support such causes.
Along with housewives and children, youngsters and elders who can set aside some time from their daily routines, what they need are a bunch of specialised professionals who can support such initiatives.
“We need people with some specialisations.
We need doctors, nurses, marketing specialists, etc.
Each professional can contribute in his/her own capacity to society,” he said.
People are needed to go out, meet and convince people to be part of such noble causes. “We are looking for volunteers driven by a concern for society and who can come and work for such causes.”
There are children with various disabilities, including autism (disorder characterised by troubles with social interaction and communication), Down syndrome (associated with physical growth delays, characteristic facial features and mild-to-moderate intellectual disability), intellectual disabilities and hearing impairment.
And they need special care.
Many children suffer from hidden disabilities such as Irlen syndrome, also called Scotopic Sensitivity Syndrome and Mears Irlen Syndrome, which is a problem related to the brain’s ability to process visual information.
They too require individual care.
Aysha Alawi Baobood, Executive Director, White Hands Center for Rehabilitation, says volunteers can offer a healing touch to such children and elders, who “need to be convinced that they are not alone, but the society cares for them”.
“If colleges and schools can focus their attention on such children, it can really make a difference,” she said.
The world expects more from the younger generation.
They can be the torchbearers of multi-level campaigns in society that can reach out to the parents of specially-abled children.

KABEER YOUSUF