"I don't know about the word caregiver. I'm their father."
January 30, 2012
By Autism Society
Global specialty biopharmaceutical company Shire honored Zarrar as one of 14 caregivers through an inaugural international recognition program called the BRAVE Awards.
Most people couldn’t imagine how difficult caring for a child with a disability can be. Zarrar cares for four. His three daughters, all in their early teens, suffer from a form of Mucopolysacchridosis (MPS) and one of his two sons lives with autism.
His daughters’ condition causes hyperactivity, hearing loss, sleep disorders, loss of speech, mental retardation, blindness and dementia. Most MPS patients die before the age of 15. Even with this knowledge, Zarrar approaches every day with a “glass-half-full” attitude.
He gives his daughters, who become less mobile every day, and his son as normal a life as possible, playing outside with them, taking them to the local parks and on mini-vacations. He’s also working on renovating his house, making it more accessible to his girls.
Zarrar, along with his wife, are constantly dealing with the everyday feedings and consistent needs associated with caring for four children with disabilities, three of whom can barely complete day-to-day activities on their own.
Yet Zarrar remains unfazed by it all. His personality is one of giving help, not asking for it. His greatest joys in life are his children. And he strives every day to fill their lives with as much joy as they’ve given him.
Through it all, he has the same reply for anyone who commends him for how much he gives his family. He tells them his wife is the true hero, not him. And that speaks volumes for how selfless and inspirational Zarrar really is.
About the award
Shire received nearly 400 nominations from seven countries over 10 weeks for the BRAVE Awards. The BRAVE Awards Selection Committee, which included select Shire employees and Gary Barg, Editor in Chief of Today’s Caregiver and caregiver.com, as well as author of The Fearless Caregiver, reviewed and ranked the nominations based on the qualities that define Shire’s own BRAVE culture: respect, courage, dedication, impact and patience. Shire’s nearly 5,000 employees from across the world helped to select the Recipients and Distinguished Honorees from the pool of eligible finalists.
Shire is proud to honor 14 people as part of the inaugural BRAVE Awards; 10 Recipients each will receive $10,000 USD or the local currency equivalent, and four Distinguished Honorees will each be awarded $2,500 USD or the local currency equivalent, for a total of $110,000 USD.
“The BRAVE Awards is an outstanding program that recognizes those who selflessly dedicate their lives to the health and well-being of others who need it most,” said Mr. Barg. “The 14 inaugural recipients and honorees are heroes who are truly deserving of this recognition.”
Click here to read more about the BRAVE recipients!
Topics:Living with Autism
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