DUBAI // Boys wanting to help their fathers do so in many ways - polishing the car, running errands, fetching the newspaper.
Adeeb Al Balooshi, 9, found a new way - designing a prosthetic leg his dad can use for swimming.
"My dad had polio so he needs an artificial limb to help him," said Adeeb. "One day we were talking about why he didn't go in the water with it and he said it would get damaged. That's when I got the idea to develop a waterproof version.
"I decided to base my design on medical wax because it has a melting point of 300°C, is light, environmentally friendly and reusable."
The Emirati boy, whose other inventions include a robot house cleaner for his mum, was yesterday honoured by the municipality's knowledge management section before today's World Intellectual Property Day.
"I feel really honoured and proud to have been given this award," said Adeeb. "The inspiration for me has always been my dad and doing what I can to help my family."
His father Sulaiman said: "I've always said to him that he should approach problems with an open mind and then the solutions will present themselves. We have applied for patents to his inventions in his name in Abu Dhabi so he will get the benefit."
"Hopefully we can get some of these products to market but at the moment that isn't our top priority," said Mr Al Balooshi, a businessman. "The key thing is that Adeeb and young people like him continue with this sense of curiosity."
The Gems Wellington International School pupil who lives in Dubai with his four brothers and three sisters, has many other inventions to his name.
They include a door for cats, a fireproof helmet equipped with night vision for firefighters, and a seatbelt heart monitor that can alert emergency services if its wearer suffers a heart attack.
The idea for a robotic cleaner came to him one day when his mother asked him to help around the house.
"I put the robot together with some motors and other items I had," Adeeb said. "Now you switch it on and it goes around in the small spaces and cleans up.
"When my mum saw me just sitting around she asked why I hadn't cleaned up. When I told her I had a made a robot to do all that for us she was really happy."
The young inventor's motivation is to help as many people as he can.
"I'm not thinking about bringing my inventions to the market or getting them made at the moment," Adeeb said, after receiving a plaque from the municipality. "I just want to help people."
He advises other budding inventors to keep looking for solutions.
"The way I come up with ideas is to look where there is a problem or where people need help with something, and then I sit down and look at ways of fixing that," he said.
"My biggest advice would be to never give up on an idea."
Speaking at the ceremony, Hussain Nasser Lootah, director general of Dubai Municipality, encouraged more Emirati youth to exert their creativity and talents.