This initiative is part of the 2022-23 WISE Edtech Accelerator Cohort.
What they do
Although the number of children with disabilities in the Middle East is increasing, there remains a regional and global shortage of qualified medical experts to support them. With that in mind, the Ynmo team chose to launch the app in 2017 as a means to provide schools, learning centres and clinics with the capability to design and monitor individualised treatment plans for students with special needs. Using their combined clinical and research experience in developmental disabilities (including autism), Dr. Fahad Al-Nemary and Abdullah Murad have worked to create a platform that can help users design, monitor and share personalised therapeutic plans, and in turn, share these daily notes of progress with students’ families so that they too can be involved in their development and learning.
Why it matters
Over the last three decades, many Arab countries have undertaken various measures to develop special education programmes and services, however there still remain significant challenges when it comes to ensuring the quality of these programs and their expansion.
One major barrier towards achieving this goal continues to be the lack of knowledge and understanding around learning disabilities and special needs. This can often culminate in negative social attitudes, which in turn hinder further investment in appropriate support programmes for both students and their families; these factors can contribute to their feeling of social exclusion and isolation. As well as this experience of social exclusion, an omission of appropriate resources and support for students with special needs often result in poor student outcomes and the decreased likelihood of their entry into the world of work and independent living. Without effective early intervention programmes, transition services, and family inclusion, students with learning difficulties cannot achieve their maximum potential.
Traction so far
Founded in 2017, Ynmo has established partnerships across several countries in the Middle East including the UAE, Oman and Saudi Arabia. Currently, the team works with 3000 students with disabilities in 50+ service centres. Ynmo has also managed to establish significant partnerships with governmental entities and other national initiatives including the Ministry of Community Development in the UAE and the Early Developmental Screening Initiative (Namaai), under the Saudi Health Council.