Muscat: In an endeavour to promote education, employment and empowerment of Deaf and Hard of Hearing (DHH) individuals, as part of a special initiative - Vertex Business Solutions and Al Massa Marketing and CSR Management - hosted the nation’s first-of-its-kind forum for the DHH, under the auspices of His Excellency Sheikh Nasr bin Amer Al Hosni, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Labour.
Held under a strategic partnership with the Ministry of Labour, and with the support of The Zubair Corporation, Tanmia and Octal, this is the first time that an event has been exclusively organised to encourage and support DHH individuals and business owners and corporates. The event took place at the Hormuz Grand Hotel Muscat, and was managed by the DHH students from start to finish; with panel discussions based on two topics, namely: ‘Employment opportunities available for the DHH’ and ‘Education for the DHH – Between reality and hope’. The initiative also provided them with the opportunity to connect with key entities, learn about different aspects of higher education, government programs, training, business practices, and corporates that are actively supporting the DHH.
Witnessing the participation of the public and private sector, as well as academic institutions, the Forum presented a number of success stories related to DHH individuals and the corporates that support them. An exhibition of DHH students’ projects and initiatives was also held alongside.
Commenting on the event, Hilal Omar Al Siyabi, Chief Corporate Services Officer at Al Zubair Corporation, said: “The Zubair Corporation’s sponsorship of this event is a reflection of our commitment to support local communities and empower talented individuals in various artistic, cultural, sports and social fields, enhancing their skills in order to achieve their desired goals. We will continue to contribute meaningfully by helping similar initiatives that lead to the development of skills of people with special needs, especially those in the deaf and difficult hearing.”
Speaking on the sidelines of the event, a spokesperson from Tanmia stated: “Focused on finding ways to improve the quality of life of all of the sultanate’s citizens, our support to the initiative showcases our commitment to create greater economic opportunity for the DHH in Oman. It will help provide them with education, training, job and entrepreneurship opportunities in our community; that will in turn spur meaningful progress for the further development of our economy in the time to come.”
Discussing the relevance of the initiative - event organisers - Hassan Abdowani, Managing Director (Project Owner), Vertex Solutions and Muna Al Shukaili, CEO, Al Massa Group said in a joint statement, “We thank the government authorities and our esteemed sponsors and partners for their support to our Initiative. DHH persons can be provided with several education, employment and training opportunities in the labour market, ensuring that their right to work is on an equal footing with others as part of Oman’s Vision 2040. Our event’s prime goal was to promote and support the same, while highlighting the skills and capabilities of the sultanate’s talented DHH community and their rights as active members of society.”
They continued: “The project also includes developing more than 40 high-quality interactive training programs for graduates and job seekers and making them available through the cloud learning management system through an electronic library, with the aim of professional, competitive and personal development for participation and integration in life and work. We also seek, through the initiative, to develop sign language for people with hearing disabilities and their colleagues. From this platform, we call on all sectors to join hands with us to support this initiative and to provide equal opportunities for education and employment for people with hearing disabilities, and to help them if they want to establish their own projects; and thereby continue efforts to create a more comprehensive work environment in the vibrant labor market in the Sultanate.”
The Deaf and Hard of Hearing (DHH) Forum organized by Vertex Business Solutions and Al Massa Marketing and CSR Management aimed to bring about more awareness and discuss opportunities related to the DHH population in Oman. Through the event, the companies aimed to advocate for, and promote the general welfare of DHH individuals by providing expertise related to challenges faced by them, and encouraging the private sector to provide them with access to education, training, jobs, resources and services.