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Amai Park

Amai Park for Visually Impaired Children in Islamabad, Pakistan

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Recently, ANT-Hiroshima sent Funkor Child Art Center director Fauzia Minallah a small donation towards the development of facilities of “Amai park”, a playground for visually impaired children. The playground was funded by FCAC and opened on the premises of the Al Maktoom Centre for the Visually Handicapped in Islamabad, and is the first of its kind to be set up in Pakistan.20The playground features a fountain, a sand pit, wind chimes, herbs and fragrant plants to appeal to the children’s senses of sound, touch and smell. Children can also jump on “crunchy leaves”, touch banana plants, and play on slides, swings and a merry-go-round in a safe environment.

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The children themselves helped to decorate the park by painting various surfaces with brightly coloured flower designs.

Amai Park takes its name from a cartoon character created by Fauzia Minallah for her children’s book series. Amai also appears in “Sadako’s Prayer“, which was published by ANT-Hiroshima. Amai is a bird created out of light. Amai befriends children and takes them on exciting adventures to teach them about the virtues of love, peace and tolerance.

Amai means ‘mother’ in some parts of Balochistan. Speaking about the concept behind the park, Fauzia explained,

“Amai loves children like a mother and we tried to make this park as comfortable and cozy as that of mother.”

The park has been set up on a limited budget and its small scale and local appeal is in keeping with the philosophy of ANT-Hiroshima. The money donated by ANT-Hiroshima has been used to make a braille version of “Sadako’s Prayer” on metalic plates that will be set up in the park.

The rest of the donation has gone towards providing emergency family packs for some of the families who have been displaced from the SWAT valley in the recent conflict against the Taliban in that region.

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