x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 22 January 2018

Dh17,500 camera would help student gain independence

Expensive equipment required to help university students with special needs held up by lack of funding.

AL AIN // Omar Darwish al Qadi, a partially sighted engineering student who was born with retinopathy, hopes he will not have to rely on his friends much longer.

The 19-year-old is waiting for the Dh17,500 piece of equipment, held up because of lack of funding, that will allow him to study independently of others at the UAE University. The small camera uses technology called Clear Note to transfer and enlarge images in the classroom to his laptop.

Until he gets it, the first-year student from Sharjah needs help with the basics of university life, including note-taking.

Overall, however, he said accessibility is improving.

"It's becoming much easier for people with disabilities here," he said. "In the past, it wasn't so, but things are changing."

He is confident when he finishes his studies in three years, he will be able to enter the workplace like any of his classmates.

"I love the lab work so when I go to work it won't be a problem for me," he said.