Anam Khan

Anam Khan

Group training

We had studied Japanese for three months at Toyama Sunrise. Before coming to Japan, I knew that how to say greetings in Japanese only, so it was very difficult to learn about Japanese.

After the three months, we studied many other things, including barrier-free society, leadership, and abuse toward people with disabilities. We also learned how to plan a project, and how people with cross-disabilities can communicate with each other. It was very useful.

Individual training

My first individual training took place at the Center for Independent Living “Honyara” in Tsukuba city. I learned many things about personal assistance. For instance, I saw and learned about assistance service for people with disabilities. I also visited the home of a person with severe cerebral palsy and saw the barrier-free rooms and lifestyle in the house. I also visited a plant where people with intellectual disabilities worked. I saw how they worked. They get wage of their working from this plant. I think this arrangement will help for people with disabilities live independently. In Pakistan, there are no places where people with intellectual disabilities can work, so I wanted to create a working place such as this one in Pakistan.

I also went to Center for Independent Living ”Higashiyamato” for a week training course. I stayed with two Japanese families. First, it was the home of Mr. and Mrs. Tabuchi. Mrs. Tabuchi had disability, spinal injury. Her house is barrier-free and has an automatic chair-lift that going up and down the stairs. It was very interesting because I had never seen it before. I used it many times. I was very surprised to see someone with spinal injury was married with children. This doesn’t happen very often in Pakistan. I then stayed at the home of Ms. Ebihara. She lives on an artificial respirator around the clock. I was surprised to see someone with such a severe disability living all by herself. Together with Ms. Ebihara, I went to a company of assistance device such as lift and saw many types of lifts, for example; a lift that helped the user to move to a bed, a lift for going to a toilet and bathroom, and a lift for taking a car. The company makes original lifts tailored to each type of disability. The lifts were small and easy to use.

At “Higashiyamato”, I studied about independent living program (ILP). ILP is one of the program for Independent Living, the people with disabilities decide to live independently and want to learn many things for Independent Living, and they can take ILP. During the ILP, we made hand-made sushi. It was very tasty. I also went to a bakery by people with intellectual disabilities. I talked and danced with them. It was a great experience for me.

During the training at “Saito Kobo” in Tokyo, I learned how to make a wheelchair. I learned how to assemble a wheelchair and made a controller and cushion for an electric wheelchair. Eventually I mastered how to repair a wheelchair.

Next, I went to Center for Independent Living “Yah! Do’ Miyazaki”, in Miyazaki. Here, I learned ILP, peer counselling for women, and how to get support from the government. I also saw artworks by people with disabilities and talked with people with mental disabilities. I had never had these experiences before.

At AJU Center for Independent Living in Aichi, I studied peer counselling and ILP again.

At Independent Living ”MUCHU” Center, I talked with a lady with a severe disability and learned about her needs.

At Center for Independent Living ”Partner”, people with intellectual disabilities and physical disabilities lived together. I had never seen this type of center before. It was very interesting.

My last individual training course took place at Human Care Association. I studied peer counseling for three weeks and served as a peer counselling leader for two days. In the beginning I was so tense and forgot everything I had learnt. Once I relaxed, I managed quite well and got positive feedbacks from the staffs. I also studied personal assistance service at Human Care Association.

I learned so much about peer counselling and personal assistance service. I would like to continue these efforts in Pakistan. I visited so many centers for independent living and had a lot of wonderful experiences.

Fun events I experienced in Japan

I did many things in Japan that I had never done before.

I learned how to swim and ski. Before coming to Japan, I had never thought I could do that. But now, I can swim and ski. I saw snow as well. It was cold, but so much fun that I forgot it was cold.

I stayed at the home of the Nishio-family in Kagawa. We ate rice cake in the New Year and drew a fortune slip at a shrine, which said that during this year, I can be great luck so I was very happy.

In Kyoto and Osaka, I went to see cherry blossoms. The cherry blossoms were so beautiful. I also rode a rickshaw in Kyoto. It was so fun.

In Miyazaki, I saw the ocean. There is an ocean in Pakistan too, but it is far from where I live. I was happy to see the ocean at last.

I visited Sanrio Puroland with Mr. and Mrs. Mitsuoka. I love Hello Kitty. I took a photograph with Hello Kitty.

There is not much halal meet in Japan. In Kobe, I had halal beef. It was very good but very expensive.

My plans in Pakistan

There are four things I would like to do since I am back in Pakistan.

  1. I would like to launch peer counselling and independent living programs.
  2. I would like to launch personal assistance services with support from the government.
  3. I would like to launch inclusive education programs.
  4. I would like to make Pakistan as a barrier-free society.

I am so happy that I learned so much during the 10-month training. I would like to work hard after going back to Pakistan. I would like to thank everyone at the Duskin AINOWA Foundation, the Duskin family, and the Japanese Society for Rehabilitation of Persons with Disabilities for having given me this opportunity. I would like to also extend my gratitude to everyone who welcomed me at my training destinations. Thank you so much.