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Student volunteers renovate home of child with special needs
American University of Sharjah (AUS) and Sharjah City for Humanitarian Services (SCHS) jointly worked on a social project to improve the homes of people with special needs. Entitled the Hand in Hand project, the initiative yielded the renovation of four homes since its launch two years ago. The most recent project was that of a family with a child with special needs. The renovated home was returned to its residents on April 25, 2013 in special ceremony attended by officials from both organizations.
SCHS chose the home of one of the children under its care and recommended it for the project. AUS Office of Student Affairs' Community Services mobilized its student volunteers and resources to ensure the project's success. In collaboration with the Islamic Cultural Club, a month-long fund raising campaign was held at the university to generate funds for the project. Sharjah Islamic Bank contributed generously in support of such a noble cause.
More than 40 student volunteers took turns over one week helping in the renovation project by cleaning, painting and decorating the house. In addition to the renovation, basic home furnishings were provided to replace the old and damaged ones. "It was a great experience," said Aisha Buhari, an accounting major who volunteered for the project. "It made me feel great that I was able to help those in need. The smiles on their faces were immeasurable," she added.
The family expressed their joy and satisfaction upon seeing the improvements in their house and thanked AUS and SCHS for their efforts and for supporting them and for considering the welfare of their child with special needs.
"Many students turned out to volunteer for this project; we had to make shifts to accommodate most of them," said Dr. Moza Al Shehhi, AUS Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, during the handover ceremony. "This is a very good indication that many of our students have become increasingly interested in serving and helping others. The Hand in Hand project is one of our pioneer projects in partnership with governmental organizations to promote a stronger society and to engage the youth in meaningful activities," she added.
The ceremony was also attended by Dr. Munketh Taha, Director of Student Development and Organizations; AUS and SCHS officials; as well as student volunteers and members of the Islamic Cultural Club.