By Mohammad Al-Otaibi

PARIS, Aug 16 (KUNA) -- Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah Prize for Digital Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities had been contributing immensely in the past two decades to the international efforts encouraging and enabling this sector of society to create and innovate, said an official from United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on Tuesday.
Speaking to KUNA on the 20th anniversary of launching the prize, which will be celebrated Wednesday, UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Communication and Information Tawfik Jelassi said that it was important to include people with disability in societal efforts to develop and progress.
The award, allocated biennially, acknowledged the contributions of persons with disabilities, making an effort to encourage their digital contributions, he added.
Whether individualistically or within an organization, the prize is an essential tool to highlight digital technology made by people with extraordinary talents, Jelassi reiterated.
He revealed that the prize was based on axis benefiting persons with disabilities via creating policy empowering such individuals, spreading awareness on their contributions, encouraging partnership, and recreating the most suitable atmosphere for sustainable digital creation.
According to estimates, there were over one billion individuals with special needs, around 15 percent of the planet's population, noted Jelassi who called for supporting legislations and regulations to protect the rights of people with disability and promote their talents.
The UNESCO official commended Kuwait's relentless quest to support people with disabilities especially within the digital domain, saying that the prize was a great evidence of the country's sincere sentiment towards this important sector of society.
Since membership in 1960, the State of Kuwait had been a great contributor to international efforts especially with integrating persons with special needs into society and the Sheikh Jaber Prize they could showcase their talents within the digital domain.
Kuwait's Permanent Representative to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Dr. Adam Al-Mulla affirmed that the Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad prize had indeed made a difference to people with disabilities through finding digital solutions and resources improving their quality of life.
The prize, named after late Amir Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, had earned recognition by the international community and made an impact of societies worldwide, Dr. Al-Mulla added.
Changing the societal perspective on people with disabilities was important, this sector of society could and is able to excel and amaze if given the chance, he affirmed.
He went on to say that, the public and private sector must benefit from the talents of people with disabilities because they have plans, ambitions, which equal, and sometimes surpassing those who were not disabled.
UNESCO's Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah Prize for Digital Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities grants USD 40,000 biennially to individuals and institutes contributing to integrating people with special needs into society. (end) mao.gta