The Saudi Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) Society (AFTA Society)
AFTA Society, the first charity to be established in the Middle East to serve people with ADHD, was officially registered at the Ministry of Social Affairs under license number (474) on 19 Ramadan 1430 (9 September 2009). His Royal Highness Prince Khalid Bin Bandar is the honorary president of AFTA Society, and the board of directors includes a number of members of the Royal family and other leaders of Saudi society.
The Society aims to provide support for people with ADHD, to contribute to communityawareness, and to decrease the negative effects of the disorder.We aim to raise the quality of life for people with ADHD by raising awareness and improving services about ADHD, which affects about 15% of the children of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.Despitethe large number of children who are in need of diagnosis and treatment, it is difficult to find appropriate high-quality comprehensive services in the Kingdom.
Since its establishment, the Saudi ADHD Society has initiated numerous projects to raise awareness about the disorder among members of the community, including many workshops directed atparents, educators,children and adolescents affected by ADHD.Amongthe most prominentsuccesseswas our organization of our third international symposium in November 2009, held under the aegis of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz, and in partnership with the American Academy of Pediatrics – the most important institution working to improve child health worldwide. The ADHD Society held this conference at the Intercontinental hotel in Riyadh, and catered to nearlyathousand delegates, including physicians, educators, and families affected by ADHD. The conference included numerous lectures, round-table discussions, intensive courses, and workshops.
Why Was it Established?
My exposure to many cases of ADHD motivated me and encouraged me to establish the association. These cases, which were frequent at my workplace, did not have nearly enough support, mostly due to the lack of awareness in our society. To rectify this, I proposed the idea of a non-profit organization built to support people with ADHD in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia by providing the best services, research and treatment available. In addition, the organization is responsible for raising awareness about the disorder and improving the services provided for the people who live with it.
The Negative Effects of ADHD
ADHD has multiple negative impacts on many aspects of the life of the individual, including social, behavioral, and academic aspects. In the absence of early diagnosis and appropriate treatment, the problems resulting from the disorder increase. The problems can then grow to extremes, the most serious of which being addiction, among other complications, potentially leading to the individual breaking the law.
Fortunately, ADHD can be dealt with. Research has shown that children who are provided with diagnosis and appropriate treatment early, display no difference from their peers without the disorder after a year of regular treatment. In addition, studies have shown the potential for decreases in the rate of addiction by up-to 85%.
The Positive Effects of ADHD
- The ability to be innovative and to find innovative means to reach goals.
- The ability to accomplish multiple tasks at the same time.
- The ability to see solutions when others cannot see them at all.
- The ability to overcome difficulties, and a love of activity.
- The instinctive tendency to change and an interest in the unknown.
- The personal qualities of generosity, sympathy, a sense of humor, etc.
Updated: 2 October 2017 by