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The Pakistan Autism Meetup Group Message Board › 3rd South Asian Conference for Autism Awareness, Dhaka, Bangladesh. 16th-17t

3rd South Asian Conference for Autism Awareness, Dhaka, Bangladesh. 16th-17th January 2009

A former member
Post #: 516
Dr Stephen Shore has confirmed to speak at dhaka next month. All of his presentations can also be read online here. He sends greetings to the Pakistan Autism Meetup Group.

For the first time in Bangladesh SWAC is going to arrange a ‘Regional Conference on Autism’ on 16-17 January, 2009 in, Dhaka. The main objective of this program is to enhance the knowledge of parents, professionals, specialists and teachers so that they can have a better understanding of autism and offer improved services to children with autism, raise awareness about autism in the society and appeal to the government, non-government organizations and generous individuals of the society to come forward and support us in changing the lives of autistic children.

A former member
Post #: 517
This will be the first regional conference on Autism in Bangladesh.

We are welcoming Speakers and participants from UK, USA, India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bhutan & Srilanka.

Submission of Abstract(Last date) : 31 December, 2008

Last Date of Registration : 10 January, 2009

Registration fee : USD 50(Foreigner)

Society for the Welfare of Autistic Children (SWAC)
2/H/7/A, Golden Street, Shyamoli
Dhaka-1207, Bangladesh
Phone: +88 01711632861, + 88 01713444565, 01712793662,01713037403,,

For those who want to attend the conference, email SWAC and they will mail you invitation letter. Then you apply for business visa, then buy ticket and reach dhaka. In dhaka, USD $ 50 is registration fees and you will have to pay hotel charges, not sure about that, will post more soon.
A former member
Post #: 3
any one from Pakistan planing to attend the coference in Dhaka?
A former member
Post #: 520
Mrs Rukhsana Shah is going as representative of the government of pakistan, and as a speaker. I am also going as a speaker.

Single entry visa cost is Rs 200. PIA economy ticket khi-dhaka is around Rs 28,000. Visa takes 7 working days to process, simple procedure, but you need printout of invitation letter which SWAC will email you if you tell them you want to attend the conference. They will arrange hotel, but participants of the conference will have to pay for it (not sure hoe much, you can email and ask them), and will also have to pay USD$ 50 as registration charged, payable on arrival. 2 day conference 16-17 jan 2009. AFA Dehli is participating.

Qazi Fazli Azeem
A former member
Post #: 70
Just to clarify matters. I am definitely not going as a government representative. I dont think that our government - social welfare and special education etc - are even aware of this event. I am going as rep of Ramaq and for having started the idea of regional conferences with the first one in Lahore in 2005. Second one was in Delhi in 2008 and this is the third in Dhaka.
It would be excellent that a larger group from Pakistan goes to this conference, parents, teachers and professionals, especially from Karachi University and other academic institutions as well as government reps.

Rukhsana Shah
A former member
Post #: 71
Just to let friends know that I could not go tothe Dhaka Conference because Ameer got Hepatitis. Thank God that he has recovered but it was impossible to leave him. But Qazi will be posting his feedback for all of us.

Rukhsana Shah
A former member
Post #: 527


I just came back to Karachi, pakistan from Dhaka, Bangladesh, where I represented pakistan and gave 4 presentations/papers on Employment, Research updates, Self Advocacy (My story) and Pakistan's Autism country update 2008-2009.

This event was the 3rd South Asian Autism Conference 16-17 Jan 2009 at Dhaka Bangladesh, the previous event was the 2nd South Asian Conference on Autism at Delhi India in January 2008 where I also represented pakistan and presented there. The first South Asian Autism Conference was in 2005 in Lahore in Pakistan, which I did not attend as I found out about my own Asperger's Syndrome in October 2006.

I have many hours of video recordings, will try to put those up on the site, aside from awareness we had a few foreign researchers too and shared some new ideas and breakthroughs.

Quite a lot happened, all positive.

There were many speakers from US, UK, India, and nearly all of them could perfectly speak the bangladeshi language, so there was benefit for the local people who were attending, they were mostly bangla speakers with little or no knowlege of english, for us who did not know bangla the people sitting next to us were transylating, but all the text in the powerpoint presentations was purely english. I think me from pakistan, and 2 of the indian speakers and 1 bangladeshi woman from uk, we were the only people who spoke purely in english and hindi/urdu. A lot of elected ministers were there, and the new prime minister of bangladesh, Sheikh hasina, her daughter was there (her daughter is special educator from US who works with autistic children) so that was a big thing, as was the social and welfare minister who was recently elected in government, he was there on both days and later at the dinner too, pledged support to donate government land to the SWAC to make residential and vocational centres for autistic children. The people of bangladesh have little awareness so this helped a lot, in dhaka city there is SWAC but in other cities of bangladesh there is nearly no awareness so this conference was good for the country, we even had my and merrys interview in the local papers, and interviews of the organizers in the local tv channels.
Some speakers, strangely enough, who were doctors with decades of local practice or university experience, did quote and use research in their papers which was over 15 years old, like injecting secretin into the fetus, older DAN protocols, and general knowlege of autism, I think my paper and a handful of others used purely new developments from 2008 and 2009. A lot of special educators and parents asked me questions in the lunch and tea breaks and I answered all of them using a translator as I do not speak the local bengali language.
The conference ended on a good note, all agreed that we have to use one language for teaching special children and that many things need to be done, change in food as well as therapies as well as exercise and sensory management all must happen at the same time for a major difference to be made, the importance for early intervention and inviting foreign trainers was also put forward. I have made videos

PS. My drawings have been accepted in the 2009 coffee table book "Artism Anew" of Artism Today which will be published shortly in the US.

A former member
Post #: 72
Dear All

Qazi's brief is excellent and indicates the bright future and potential of doing real work for children with autism in the region. The main objective of such events is to raise awareness and attract government attention, which has been done very successfully at the Dhaka Conference. There will be many posts here to discuss issues, but I hope that the problem of teaching children in one language only is thoroughly discussed as we have at least three languages in Pakistan - Mother tongue, Urdu and English. This problem is also there in India, and the AFA has a policy of teaching children only in English, and talking to them in Englsih too. This is not possible in Pakistan because parents here dont speak in English as they do all over India, whether they are rich or poor. We need to discuss this issue here.

Secondly, as Sri Lankan reps dropped out of the Conference at thelast moment, there may be a chance that the 4th Conference is organised in Pakistan. In which case we will do it in Karachi - all of us!

Rukhsana Shah
A former member
Post #: 518
Dear Qazi Fazli,

thanks once again for attending the conference and sharing the news, waiting for more updates about the conference as well as a u-tube or picture up load of the karachi center, irum or saira will explain that further.

Dear Rukhsana,

hope that ameer is doing better by now, may Allah keep our kids healthy, well and progressing always, ameen.

I had to refuse the last 2 conferences, as I usually schedule many national and state guest speaking trips..only one international trip yearly, and its always pakistan for do let me know if you guys decide to have the conference scheduled in karachi and i will try to scynchronize my timings if possible, or can help in other organization areas..

my 2 cents about households using multiple languages is to try communicating more in english if possible, esp, as we have more resources and programs to help child gain rapid goals and it will help them gain rapid communicative skills thru. sight word reading and then comprehension.


saima ijaz
Saira S.
Group Organizer
Karachi, PK
Post #: 574
Dear Azeem,
Congratulations on having such a successful tour of bangladesh and having so much of good and informative exposure.I am sure you will hav emuch more to share with all of us an d it will be very nice if you can do that with our other members.The january meetup is probably on the 31st ,if its possible for you then you can come and share what you learned with other members.if that day is not suitable for you let me know I can change but I really think it will be very beneficial for parents to learn from you what you were able to learn at the conference.
Please,let me know if its possible and once again thanks for always taking the initaitives and representing us so well everywhere.You are a true inspiration for many.
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