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Autism Care Center

Multan, Pakistan
  • Ad Id
  • Ad Posted
    5 Jun 2017
  • Seller Type
    An Individual
Mothers’ preserve In the absence of any governmental facility, some mothers come together to provide a sanctuary for their autistic children. In all her years of practicing medicine, never once did Dr Naima Haider imagine that one day she’d be left stumped about her child’s health. For two years after his birth, her son Inam showed no signs of speaking, like the other kids did, or responding to his mother or any other way of communicating. “Although I am a doctor, it was difficult for me to understand why my son would not respond to any of my prompts. He would remain busy in playing games and mobile phones,” says Dr Naima, a 33-year-old ophthalmologist who works at a major hospital in Rawalpindi. “I observed that he never spoke like the other children even after he was two-years-old.” As Dr Naima later understood, her child was different from the other children: now about four-and-a-half years old, Inam was an autistic child. Autism or Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) refers to a group of complex disorders of brain development. These disorders manifest themselves in children from 18 months to three years of age. They present themselves as difficulties in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication, cognition and repetitive behaviour. Panicked, Dr Naima and her family visited various government and private hospitals in Rawalpindi and Islamabad in search of medical help. They were met with the same answer everywhere: no hospital was equipped to deal with cases of autism. As fate would have it, Dr Naima found help in two mothers who were in the same boat: Ghazal Nadeem and Bushra Suhaib, the director and executive director of the Autism Resource Centre (ARC), Rawalpindi. “One of my friends told me about the ARC; I visited them in November 2013 to seek treatment for my child,” says Dr Naima. “My son has improved a lot during the last one-and-a-half years; he now likes to play with his elder sister, he also visits the park frequently to play with other kids.” The ARC was set up as a dedicated facility for autistic children by Ghazal and Bushra, both from military families, since their children needed support and help was not available. “I took the initiative to establish the ARC in Rawalpindi five years ago because two of my children were autistic,” says Ghazal, who teamed up with Bushra after learning that one of her children was autistic too. “There are 350,000 autistic children in Pakistan, according to a recent research of the ARC. One out of 66 children is autistic; this number is increasing with the passage of time.”Views: 688