People | Both sides

A Smile is the Best Reward
TOGETHER, IT'S ALL POSSIBLE. The ADIBI Association improves the quality of life of people with disabilities and/or rare diseases.

The CLH Aviación supervisor at the Alicante airport, Jacobo Fernández-Pacheco, collaborates with the ADIBI Association which works for people with disabilities and those affected by rare diseases.

“I don’t see disabilities; I actually see no difference. What I see is a need to collaborate and support children with diverse needs,” says Jacobo Fernández-Pacheco, a CLH Aviación supervisor at the company’s facilities at the Alicante airport. For two years now, he has been collaborating with the ADIBI association by participating in therapies for children with Down’s Syndrome, among other activities. This work has helped him become aware of a reality and certain needs that are still rather unknown in society. “The happiness shown by children is really worth sharing,” he states.

What is ADIBI?

It’s a non-profit organisation that focuses all its efforts on defending the disabled and/or people with rare diseases in attempt to improve their quality of life as well as that of their families through a number of projects and activities. Its goal is to change society so it becomes more just and inclusive.

How was it founded?

Thanks to the efforts of people like Fide Mirón, the current President. She’s an enterprising woman and a fighter who knows what it’s like to have a disability due to a rather uncommon disease. She was able to get a number of people affected by a disability together with a commitment and the courage to fight for others. In 2002, the history of ADIBI began and she has been working since then to help people with disabilities and/or rare diseases and their families lead dignified lives where their rights are respected and their needs are met.

What activities does it engage in?

ADIBI works comprehensively to reach all possible areas and all of society. One of its most important tasks is informing and advising everyone with any type of direct or indirect relationship with any type of disability and/or rare disease. To this end, its awareness and communication work is also fundamental to getting society to accept and integrate all people.

“For me, they’re not any different from any of us. They’re just people who have needs like all of us” And what about the people affected?

The association’s services include countless activities. From rehabilitation and emotional support workshops to job training and integration projects as well as the organisation of a number of leisure and free time initiatives. It’s all done to improve the quality of life of the beneficiaries and help them live with their disability and/or disease as best as possible.

How did you begin collaborating?

Some parents of children affected by Down’s Syndrome got together in Ibi, a small town in Alicante, to form a Support Group. I began participating in some of their activities to help them do it all after being told about it by an acquaintance. This group later joined ADIBI as part of what is now known as the Down Area or AdibiDown.

What exactly do you do?

Ever since I began, my collaboration has focused on supporting the group with their activities and events. Whenever I can, I help the leaders with the therapies they do with children in swimming pools to stimulate their psychomotricity skills as well as help them when needed to set up stands or a stage for some type of event, hang up signs or whatever. I also help spread awareness for the association to increase visibility.

AUTHORISED TESTER. Jacobo is one of the few people at CLH Aviación who are accredited by ENAC (Spanish National Accreditation Agency) to conduct volumetric measuring device calibration and verification tests.

What do you get out of it?

Having direct contact with the association and particularly with the work group AdibiDown and the families has helped me gain an understanding for their reality and fight to be treated normally and respectfully. For me, they’re not any different from any of us. They’re just people who have needs like all of us. Seeing the children smile makes me feel good and their happiness compensates for the time invested. I like to think my collaboration helps boost these kids’ development a bit and helps them have a better life.

How do you believe people can help these kinds of associations?

By knowing what they do from reading their websites, supporting their work and, preferably, by getting involved. Together, we can help these groups of people improve their day-to-day.