The Executive Director of DRRA Ms. Farida Yesmin has participated in ‘International Conference on Autism and Neuro-developmental Disorder’ held in Bhutan on 19 to 21 April 2017. The overall theme of the conference was “developing effective and sustainable multi-sectoral programs for individuals, families, and communities living with autism and Neuro-disability and other Neuro-developmental disorders.” Ms. Farida Yesmin attended as a panelist and presented a paper in the plenary as an expert. She also replied the queries of different delegates from other countries. The experience of DRRA on autism and Neuro-developmental disability and DRRA model was widely appreciated and raised interests among the participants of different countries.
The conference was a state program hosted by Bhutan’s Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare of Bangladesh with technical support from Shuchona Foundation of Bangladesh, Ability Bhutan Society (ABS), and World Health Organization South-East Asia Region Office. The honorable Prime Minister of Bangladesh was the Chief Guest. Especially a team of delegates from Bangladesh under the leadership of the Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina invited in the three-day conference as Bangladesh has significant achievement in the development of people with autism and Neuro-developmental disorders.
Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and the King of Bhutan Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck inaugurated the conference. Ms. Saima Wazed Hossain Putul, a member of WHO’s expert advisory panel on mental health and chairperson of the National Advisory Committee on Autism, has taken initiatives to hold the conference in Thimphu at WHO’s request. More than 350 participants comprising senior government leaders, policymakers, experts and stakeholders from Bhutan and around the world attended the conference.