Our Story

Small Steps - Our Story

A Little Background Story

Small Steps is born out of personal experience. Our founder, Shamaila Nawaz, is a British citizen and Dubai resident for the past seven years. She is the mother of a three-and-a-half-year-old boy with autism. Her struggle began when she attended an induction of her son's new school in Dubai, where his admission was done.

Soon after the induction, she realized that her child cannot meet the requirements of the school and expressed her concerns to the school’s staff. A series of disappointing e-mail exchanges with head teachers did not deter Shamaila. She set out to find a school that could adequately support her son’s education.

"I know the feeling of a child being rejected from a school only because he cannot cope with the school environment, it’s painful and daunting.” - Shamaila Nawaz

Shamaila initially struggled to find the right support for her son in Dubai. She relied on resources in her home country, the United Kingdom, to provide the right level of care and support for her child. She became aware of a pronounced shortage of high-quality providers to support children with learning difficulties. Her journey and struggle inspired her to establish Small Steps.