For 49 years the Indian Cultural and Social Centre (ISC) has served as a community hub for Indians in the capital, making it one of the oldest social clubs in the country and an integral part of Abu Dhabi’s history.
Originally founded in 1967 with the help of the late Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the founding father of the UAE, the centre had humble beginnings, with a small group of members and facilities. Mirroring the growth of Abu Dhabi, the centre in 2008 moved to its current modernised five-storey building which also saw the support of the UAE’s leadership, with President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan allocating the land for its new location.
“The centre originally had a small group of members who would get together. The land for the centre was given by the late Shaikh Zayed. Over time, as the community grew, so did the membership numbers, with more than 2,500 members currently registered, and when we put these numbers with their families it comes to more than 10,000 people associated with the club,” said Thomas Varghese, who has been with the centre for more than 30 years and currently serves as its president.
“We have many types of facilities our members can use whether its for sports, entertainment, or education. As well as having many facilities which can be used on a daily basis, we also celebrate big occasions and festivals, and for such events our doors are always open to the entire community,” he added.
Varghese spoke proudly of the fact that the centre has been around for so long, with Abu Dhabi being a home away from home for many Indians.
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