United Arab Emirates
Zero Project 2019/20
The Manzil Center is a non-profit organization focused on Inclusive Education and employment based in the Emirate of Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). It has developed the PRIDE (People Receiving Independence and Dignity through Empowerment) programme, offering education programmes, vocational training and employment services to children and young people with disabilities. Manzil collaborates with government, people with disabilities and their families, schools, special education centres and businesses to promote inclusion. Between 2016 and 2019, 450 young people went through its employment readiness screening process.
The PRIDE programme covers all of Manzil’s education and training programmes, ranging from pre-education (for children aged 4 and up) to vocational training and employment programmes (for students aged 14 and over). Placement in one of Manzil’s programmes is supported by an assessment by a multidisciplinary team, including special educators, facilitators, therapists, and job coaches.
Students can either attend Manzil’s education centre on a full-time basis or attend individual programmes part-time. All full-time students spend at least one day a week in a mainstream school.
Students in Manzil’s employment programmes undergo an assessment to identify whether they are job ready or require further skills training. If job ready, candidates’ profiles are matched with the appropriate job opportunities. For the others, the assessment process recommends appropriate training, and they can enrol in Manzil’s pre-vocation or vocational training programmes.
Once in employment, a job coach accompanies the employee for the initial onboarding and training, gradually phasing out support as the employee settles into the new environment.
Manzil is partially funded by student fees. Fees are 40 per cent subsidized, with sponsorships from organizations and individuals bridging the gap. To ensure sustainability, Manzil is planning to offer paid consultancy services in the future.
• Between 2016 and 2019, 450 people went through the employment readiness process. 72 per cent of job offers received by employment programme graduates have resulted in permanent employment.
• Between 2016 and 2019, 1,640 education professionals were trained in inclusive teaching techniques and classroom management.
• PRIDE’s social return on investment in 2016 was calculated at 1:6.35, compared to the UAE average of 1:3.3 and the international average of 1:4.7
Manzil will continue its partnership with the Emirates NBD banking group on the Together Limitless Careers Network, started in 2016 and which promotes workplace inclusion based on the PRIDE programme philosophy.
Manzil has signed memorandums of understanding with the Ministry of Education and the Ajman Chamber of Commerce to share its expertise, and also plans to replicate elements of the PRIDE programme within and outside the UAE.
Contact person: Ayesha Saeed Husaini, email@example.com