Differently Enabled by Omnia Arfin

In addition to the normal daily challenges, 12 million people with special needs face difficulties at home, at work, in education, and getting from one place to another. The national media has the habit of covering the darker aspects of their lives and creating an image that many people with special needs tend to resent. There are a number of organized groups, rallying for their rights and trying to make sure that laws in favor of their rights are actually implemented on the ground. Photographer Omnia Arfin writes ‘By documenting the lives of different individuals with “disabilities,” I hope to challenge some of the misconceptions and stereotypes held by the wider community, and to explore the positive side of their lives, portraying each person not as someone with special needs, but rather as someone with special abilities.’

Ahmed prays in his room before going to the sports club for special needs. He practices table tennis at the sports club almost every day.
Reem Yahya, 26, has had cerebral palsy since birth, due to a medical mistake, which affects her movement and speech, but not her mental ability.
Reem finished primary school at home, then graduated from Faculty of Arts Media Department. She is preparing to get her master's degree in drama.
Reem also works as a media coordinator in an association for children with special needs.
Hamada has played many sports since the age of 18, such as bodybuilding, boxing, aikido, arm wrestling and weightlifting, but his main sport is athletics, such as the discus throw and high jump.
Omnia Arfin 
Omnia Arfin (b. 1984) was born in Egypt, grew up in Saudi Arabia, and then emigrated to Canada—a life that has given her the chance to meet people of different cultures and religions, and encouraged her to tell stories about them, documents their lives and habits. She received a bachelor’s degree in Applied Arts majoring Graphic Design in 2007 at Helwan University, and studying now for a master’s degree. Omnia’s passion for photography since she was 16 years old, when she started to work in wedding photography studio with her aunt for three years in Saudi Arabia, then went on to do academic training in photography.In 2012, Arfin was selected for Al-Liquindoi photojournalism workshop, Contemporary Image Collective and NOOR Images, a long-term training opportunity for documentary photographers and photojournalists in Egypt. She also was selected in 2013 for World Press Photo intensive project ”Stories of Change Beyond the Arab Spring” for North African visual storytellers, which was held in Tunis and Morocco. Her work has published in The New York Times, Panorama-Mada Masr and Almasry Alyoum. In addition to exhibited and won numerous awards locally and globally as a member of "In Focus" photography club. She is currently based in Toronto, and is available for assignment.Contact - [email protected]
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