My disability won’t be my discouragement

Tuesday, March 26, 2024

Being born different can be empowering, motivating and something that makes our world unique but what if there’s a hefty price to pay?

Children with disability face numerous bumps while navigating through the journey of life. Even in school, their education is hindered by  physical barriers, lack of accommodation and equipped teachers as well as social isolation.  Instead of relishing in the joys of playing, making friends, and learning, they are forced to navigate feelings of anxiety and insecurity, emotions way beyond their tender years. “Although my son is just a child, he used to struggle with people’s mockery and judgmental gazes due to his disability”, shares Nabil’s* mother, Asmaa*.

In the quest of finding the right school for their child, many prioritise proximity. Yet, for Nabil and his family, this is a luxury beyond reach.

Nine- year-old Nabil is just like any other child of his age, enchanted by the thoughts of play and learning.  But being born with a hearing disability turned these cheerful thoughts into a daily ordeal. “Although Nabil wears hearing device, he couldn’t learn properly due to continuous external noises and  the lack of  equipped teachers and facilities in his previous classroom”, recalls Asmaa.

A rough road leads to a smooth future

“The realisation that my child has exceptional potential that’s unfulfilled was a cause of great distress”, says Asmaa. This led her to enroll Nabil in World Vision Syria Response’s equipped school, a very bold move on its own. Why, you may wonder? Well Nabil’s family reside in Ajloun, 40 km away from our school in Irbid. Despite that, when one of the school teachers listed all the services and special education provided to children with disability, the tide shifted and Asmaa didn’t hesitate for a second to accept. 

“I prioritise my son's education above everything else, despite the challenging hour and a half commute, it won’t be our barrier. Nothing was going to stop me from providing my beloved son the education he deserves”, voices  Asmaa with a smile painted on her face.

Nabil* clapping happily with his new school colleagues

But World Vision understood the struggle and tried to soothe their concerns in every way possible, and provided a stipend to cover Nabil and Asmaa public transportation expenses, lightening a load lying heavily on their chests.

Where all the magic happens

In addition to the array of facilities and services catering to various disabilities, Nabil was introduced to the hearing loop system that uses a magnetic field technology and is tailored to his  needs; the teacher wears a microphone, as she speaks, the sounds is transmitted to the system which then cancels out external noises and enhances volume, enabling Nabil to listen to all his classes efficiently.

Nabil's* teacher using the special mic to communicate with Nabil and his colleague
Nabil's* teacher using the special mic to communicate with Nabil and his colleague

"My son has discovered a sense of belonging and is now flourishing academically like never before. I've witnessed his remarkable transformation firsthand; his grades have soared as he now feels fully engaged and comprehends all his classes," shares Asmaa.

What was once viewed as an unfulfilling and sad classroom, now turned into an oasis so colorful and full of dreams and aspirations.

hearing loop system installed at Nabil's* classroom
Hearing loop system installed at Nabil's* classroom

And it will only get better

With his increased responsiveness, enhanced grades and feeling of serenity, Nabil is finally able to concentrate on his future as brighter horizons await, “when I grow up, I strive to become a doctor and dedicate my life to helping people, saving souls and supporting my family. My school and education will be my pedestal to achieve that”, says Nabil, sharing his dreams and aspirations.

"Your efforts are truly remarkable. It's my sincere wish that World Vision extends its reach to all schools. Countless children in Jordan live with disabilities and are in dire need for support. I advise any mother with a child with disability to enroll her child here. I sense the impact, feel the improvement, and the joy on my child's face speaks volumes”, encloses Asmaa.

Through our efforts and with the generous support from Ministry of foreign Affairs of Japan, we've empowered over 700 children, including 206 children with autism, learning difficulties and  physical, hearing and visual disability, across 12 schools in Irbid. Together, we've handed them the tools to paint the vibrant canvas of their future. Now, they can proudly declare, “Disability will not be my discouragement!”.

Asmaa and Nabil in the resource room established by World Vision
Asmaa and Nabil in the resource room established by World Vision