The Department of Community Development (DCD) of Abu Dhabi, is showcasing six projects aimed at enhancing technology’s role in the community during its participating at GITEX Global 2022, which is being held at the Dubai World Trade Centre between October 10 to 14, 2022. The DCD is participating in the event representing the Government of Abu Dhabi and is exhibiting latest smart and innovative projects that are implemented to contribute to the development of digital tools to review and develop services provided by various entities working for the Abu Dhabi community. These projects strengthen the Department’s contribution to elevating service quality by utilising latest technological innovations to enhance the life quality of the community.
H.E. Eng. Hamad Ali Al Dhaheri, Undersecretary of DCD, expressed his pride in the Department’s participation for the first time in this edition of GITEX Global 2022, which hosts numerous international companies and government institutions that review the latest developments in technology and innovation. The event includes various sessions, workshops, lectures and visual presentations, that are aimed at shaping a sustainable future and devise strategies to realise the goal of ensuring a happy society.
Al Dhaheri said: “The DCD’s participation in this event comes in line with its vision of providing quality lifestyle for the Abu Dhabi community. This will be possible by adopting the best international practices in technology, as it guarantees a comfortable and convenient lifestyle. The Department makes constant efforts to enhance policies and initiatives that play a significant role in the betterment of the society.”
H.E. emphasised that the DCD, represented by the Social Monitoring and Innovation sector, conducts a periodic monitoring of the digital quality of life index for the members of the Abu Dhabi community through quality-of-life questionnaires. The index was developed by the Department to scrutinise the needs of the community for digital services, with an aim to further improve the community standards of Abu Dhabi.
H.E. Sheikha Al Hosani, Acting Executive Director of the Social Monitoring and Innovation Sector at DCD confirmed that the Department is participating in GITEX Global to showcase six innovative projects that reflect its keenness to strengthen the social sector in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. These projects, such as the VR for the Elderly project, the Metaverse technology for social services, the Decent Life platform, the Social Atlas project, the Wyakom platform, and the Tegahwa platform for marriage counselling, are designed specifically to create services that are offered to the Abu Dhabi community by the DCD. These projects aim at ensuring happiness and satisfaction of the community members, as they are the priority pillars in the sector’s agenda.
The Wyakom platform provides a comprehensive representation of life quality indicators in Abu Dhabi, as well as identifying areas of interest and proposing effective solutions to ensure a decent community life. This can be achieved by leveraging modern and advanced data analytics tools that facilitates studies and research. Through this platform, the Department can monitor the life quality surveys in Abu Dhabi.
With the Metaverse application, the Department offers users the opportunity to attend counselling and orientation sessions virtually. This helps in enhancing awareness among the community and improve their abilities to face various challenges of life through an environment where privacy and comfort is available. The platform also provides a virtual space for communication, sharing, and cooperation.
Additionally, the Department is exhibiting the VR for the Elderly program, aimed at exploring the effectiveness of VR technology in enhancing well-being, family relations, social integration, and quality of life. The primary goal of the program is to raise their happiness levels by enabling them to visit the places they want to see through VR, with the support and participation of their family members from different generations. This initiative was launched in collaboration with Family Development Foundation and the digital cognitive rehabilitation initiative, both providing care for the elderly citizens and residents in Abu Dhabi. The first phase of the launch witnessed the participation of a group of citizens and residents, in which they explored the social experience using modern technology. They considered technical experience to be an important factor to enabling open areas of dialogue with family members about the topics they have witnessed and presented them with the opportunity to virtually visit different places around the world from the comfort of their home.
The Department also presented the Social Atlas project, which provides advanced spatial data representation and analysis to organize distribution of different social topics within geographical locations. This allows tracking the focus, spread, and development of social phenomena, such as marriage, divorce, disability, income, and others, which enables addressing these factors through the implementation of different initiatives in an effective and efficient manner across various regions of the Emirate using innovative and interactive visualisation methods. With this project, interactive digital maps will be created to visualise 130 areas in Abu Dhabi, Al Ain and Al Dhafra. The significance of the Social Atlas program is that it enables the Department to study important issues and social challenges using interactive maps drawn on geographical locations, in addition to compiling most important issues on various social aspects across regions in Abu Dhabi. It further allows the Department to monitor the concentration, spread, and development of social phenomena in the future to develop direct and effective solutions to address them.
Furthermore, the Department is also showcasing the Wyakom, a digital platform aiming at enhancing community interaction and engagement to monitor challenges and devising appropriate solutions for them. It covers various topics that impacts an individual’s quality of life, such as work-life balance, health, social and cultural values, social communication, social and community services, and subjective well-being. Community members voice their opinions on these, which will be evaluated by a committee of experts in the social sector. It is one of the most important digital initiatives launched by the Department, because of its role in establishing an efficient communication channel between the society and the social sector, which will further support the Department's efforts towards achieving its vision of providing a quality life for all members of society.The department also showcases the Tegahwa platform for marriage counselling, which provides virtual marital counselling sessions. This platform has shown tremendous success in raising awareness on a healthy marital life and various factors to enhance it since it was launched in 2021. It is aimed at enhancing family relations and provide marital counselling under the supervision of a distinguished group of counsellors and licensed professionals. Additionally, it provides essential advice and intervention during early age marital disputes and offers appropriate solutions to address them. It further offers advice on maintaining a happy family, while providing a more conducive home environment for raising happy and safe children. The Department also launched a comprehensive research project on this subject in the first quarter of 2021 and designed this platform to meet the needs of the community and provide high-quality consultations in a virtual environment. The Tegahwa platform achieved numerous milestones with over 90 per cent participating couples confirming a positive impact on their marital lives, while over 80 per cent saying that it mitigated the chances of divorce by facilitating effective communication, reducing disputes, and building trust.
The Department of Community Development of Abu Dhabi has been committed to contribute to the development of the community by offering smart and innovative digital solutions and platforms to ensure a healthy, safe, and quality life for all community members.