The Adeje Cultural Centre will host the 11th theatrical event for people with diverse needs on Thurday June 11th, with the participation of members of the Guía de Isora occupational centre, the Candelaria Arcoiris centre, Orobal, based in Los Cristianos, and the Los Olivos functional diversity centre. Entrance is free and the shows begin at 6pm.
“This is the only event of its kind in the islands and is a firm fixture in the Adeje cultural calendar, very popular with the public,” commented a council representative, adding that they were hoping for a full house again this year.
The users of the participating centres have played a very active role in choosing the show/play they will present, casting and presentation.
The Los Olivos centre has 119 users as well as working with 65 more individuals outside the centre. The centre works with people in the fields of education, integration, preparing many socially, helping them enter the labour market, strengthening their personal autonomy and independence and their ability to develop as individuals and improve their quality of life and that of their families.
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Yesterday the Tenerife Cabildo was in Adeje to co-launch the Magarza Sur project, an initiative to empower and enhance the personal development and social inclusion potential of women with disabilities.
The project is driven by an organisation called CoordiCanarias, who assist people with physical challenges, as well as Sinpromi (a Tenerife organisation established to protect the rights of those with special needs), the councils of Adeje and Arafo, and Hey!Participa. According to the Cabildo equality councillor Estefanía Castro, similar projects in La Laguna and Santa Cruz were successful and now “we are bringing the activities to the south to meet an existing need for women with ‘functional diversity’ outside the municipal zones”, in particular because in many cases “disabled women are considered invisible”, she said.
The Adeje equality politics councillor, Carmen Lucía Rodríguez spoke of the double discrimination suffered by women who have special needs and the challenge and the obligation for public bodies was to do all they could to “ensure a society that was equal and just for all.”
Arafo’s social services councillor, Natacha Afonso, invited other boroughs to get involved and Sinpromi’s Dulce Torres said now was the time “to break down stereotypes and prejudices”.
Equality of opportunities is very important for women with special needs as they have been proven to suffer more and increased discrimination in terms of education, employment opportunities and are more susceptible to violence and abuse. The objective of the project is not simply to highlight the reality of the situation of women in this situation but also reduce discriminations and assist in personal development and self-esteem.
Adeje hosts VII Theatre Meeting for people with special needs
The Adeje Cultural Centre Auditorium is hosting the seventh Theatre Meeting for special needs individuals on Thursday June 12th. The event is organised by the Adeje department for special needs care under councillor Carmen Rosa González Cabrera. More than fifty people from the Occupational Therapy Centres of Guía de Isora, Candelaria, Arona and Adeje will attend the event.
The councillor said, “it is an honour for us to be hosting this event for the seventh time, an event which is staged to emphasise the value of the creative and expressive work of the users of these centres”:
Carmen Rosa González Cabrera added that “in previous years we have seen an excellent level of participation and we see merit in continuing with the event because it is a manifestation of the relevance placed on the expressive and creative process which persons with different abilities can achieve. The event allows them to project their artistic endeavours, and chose which theatrical work and character they wish to interpret within that framework”.
The event begins at 6pm with participants from the following associations and centres – Orobal in Los Cristianos; Rosas del Guache in Arona; Arcoíris in Candelaria; Guía de Isora and the Los Olivos Occupational Centre in Adeje.
This is a pioneering initiative in the Canary Islands, and has been very well received by the Adeje public, who fill the theatre in the Adeje Cultural Centre every year. In this way too the public have shown their appreciation of the creative and interpretive work achieved by those who attend the occupational centres as well as that of the collectives working with them. Entry is free.
Celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Asociación San Juan
The Adeje based Asociación San Juan is celebrating twenty years of working to improve the quality of life for people with physical and mental challenges.
According to the councillor with responsibility for people with special needs, Carmen Rosa González Cabrera, “the Asociación San Juan, along with the Los Olivos Centre for the Disabled are reference points for care and attention for people with different needs in the borough of Adeje and have contributed greatly to improving lives.”
The Asociación San Juan, which bases its educational programme on the Waldorf Method, is a centre for curative education and social therapy. The Waldorf Method is one which stresses the role of the imagination in learning and places a strong value on integrating intellectual, practical, and artistic themes, integrating family, learning and work into the cultural life of the person with learning difficulties or social challenges. It is a method which favours social, cultural and profession integration for adults who have developmental problems and who need special care.
According to Fidel Ortega Dueñas, the educative director of the San Juan centre, “the implantation of an education and a way of life which promotes human rights and a level of auto- determination, and the integration of individuals who need special assistance are ideals on which the work of the Asociación San Juan is based and in recent years in collaboration with the regional Canarian government we have been able to offer social and social-health services.
To mark the anniversary the association held a number of workshops, and on Monday May 26th there will a theatre performance of “El Principito” in the Adeje Cultural Centre at 7.30pm, entry is free.
Council and Alas team members meet with potential employeers
At the launch of the Adeje council’s ‘Alas’ (Wings) programme the talk was about the creation of real jobs for people with special needs, jobs that were more than a token nod in the direction of this sector of society.
‘Alas’ is being developed by the Adeje departments of social welfare and disability and the team at the Adeje Occupational Centre whose main function is to develop participation by their users (those people with special needs) in significant activities and contribute to new levels of personal development. This in turn will lead to a reinforcement of their independence and an improvement in their quality of lfe. The centre cares for people between the ages of 21 and 65 who attend on a daily basis, and provides rehabilitation services and occupational workshops and offers the other family members of the special needs person a break, often much needed.
‘Alas’ is a series of actions based on orientation and individual attention in a work place, with professional qualified trainers, whose aim is to facilitate the social and professional integration of the special needs person into a work place, with equality of treament in that workplace. The programme aims to change the perspective of the special needs person and move them from the occupational centre into an open work environment according to their wishes, needs and abilities.
The programme is designed to work with cerebral palsy sufferers, those with intellectual needs with a recognised disability level of 33 % or more and persons with physical needs or sensory disabilities of 65 % or more. According to the organisers there are already 20 persons in training with a number almost ready to begin their new careers.
The ‘Alas’ programme seeks to ensure that the new employee is integrated into the workplace, and each individual receives training for specific work placements as well as while on the job – in other words the idea is to move away from across-the-board repetitive work practises and allow the special needs person develop skills for a specific job. Families are also involved in the programme and the development of each individual person’s employment prospects as are the companies that are hiring. And once in place there will be ongoing assesment.
During December members of the Alas programme and the council, through the relevant department headed up by Carmen Rosa González Cabrera have meetings with potential employees, based in Adeje, and believe that soon up to 20 % of those using the Occupational Centre will be eligible to enter the job market, with up to 60 % of those in Functional Rehabilitation also moving towards full integration. For business who take part in the programme they will be eligible for financial benefits reduction in taxes depending on the kind of contract they can offer the special needs person. Very much a win-win situation for all involved.