Takween is the first Palestinian center specialized in the care of children with neurological and mental disorders. Located in the city of Ramallah, it receives children with special needs to provide them and their families with specialized and quality services in a systematic, comprehensive and integrated manner to include diagnosis, medical and behavioral treatment and rehabilitation of all types.
Takween was founded by the pediatric neurologist. Dr. Rand Askalan who is , currently, the chief executive officer of Takween. She earned her PhD in neurosciences from Cambridge University in the UK and she was a clinician-scientist at the University of Toronto, Canada. As for the reason for the establishment of the center, says Askalan "I used to came to Palestine once or twice a year to work voluntarily in my field. Through these frequent visits, I became aware of the vulnerability and lack of services available to my young patients in Palestine compared to the services available to my patients in Canada, and this was very disturbing to me so I decided to establish a center like Takween in Palestine”.
The center is unique for a number of reasons, the most important of which is its qualified team with multiple expertise that enable it to address all the needs of the children and their families. "We want the center to be a favorite place for the children where they feel comfortable and happy, and to be a safe space for all members of the family." Our mission is not only to empower our children with special needs to integrate in the society, but also to make our society part of the world that our children see - they have their own world, and we have the greatest responsibility to be part of it. "In addition to Dr. Askalan, Takween brings together a team of specialized experts who have been trained locally and internationally. The team consists of specialists in pediatric neurology, clinical psychology, behavioral behavior analysis and child development, optics, visual rehabilitation and pediatrics. The staff also includes experts in special education, occupational therapy, speech and language therapy, physiotherapy, hydrotherapy, music therapy, art therapy and social work.
When we started the task of designing Takween, we strived to create an environment that will serve our patients’ medical requirements and meet the unique needs of each family. In this regard says Askalan "I wanted to turn Takween into a lovable environment for our young patients. A lot of research has proven the importance of the external influences surrounding children with special needs, as they affect their feelings about the place and people in it. The creation of a comfortable and safe environment for them will increases their interaction and responsiveness with therapists and their therapeutic program.
So I worked hard in the design phase of the building to take into account the finest details starting from the general layout of the different services to the colors and furniture selected. My goal is to create a haven for professionals who are passionate about their work, for families dedicated to caring for their children and for a community committed to helping give every Palestinian child with special needs a heathier life and a better future”.