Finalists 2012

Ability Call Center (Sector: Social)

AbilityCallCenter@EgyptNegma.org

Egypt is a country with massive untapped potential, especially in the domain of human resources. One of the most promising, yet ignored capacity is that of Egypt's physically disabled population. Constituting more than 10 million, Egyptians with special physical needs (particularly with respect to loss of vision and motor skills) are not a negligent minority and can make a major contribution to the country's economy.
A review of several call centers worldwide has revealed a common pitfall regarding the employment of physically disabled staff. These are usually the sole employees at the call centers; this creates an artificial environment where the disabled are isolated from the community, with whom the only interaction is that by phone. In a sense, therefore, while such call centers provide disabled individuals with the chance to pursue a career and obtain regular income, they indirectly reinforce their detachment from the rest of the community by confining them to an exclusive and isolated work environment.
At Ability CC, our approach calls for the integration of physically challenged individuals within the professional community by fostering normal, day-to-day interaction with colleagues and managers who are not disabled. This approach not only provides our disabled challenged staff with the courage and self-confidence to behave and contribute to their work as normal employees who are no less capable than their non-disabled peers, but also encourages the latter to respect and appreciate their physically challenged colleagues in an atmosphere of equality and cooperation.

Amr Deabes

Biography

Video

Is the founder of Ability call centre ,he decided to quit his job and start the social business focusing in promoting the role of the disabled people in the business sector and to be a role model to encourage the entrepreneurs and the business men in the Arab world to give chance to the disabled people. Amr has built his career and reputation on developing people and teams to exceed strategic business goals. He has 10 Years Experience in building and operating multiple aspects of call center business operations including: strategic planning; start up operations; account management; and project management. Amr had Implemented 5 big off shoring call centres in the Middle East and Europe. Amr has completed a Masters in Business Administration from ESLSCA Business School, majoring in Marketing. Ability business model rely on double bottom line the Social impact, community development as well as the return on investment (ROI), we investing in Employment of the disabled people, empowering disabled women and giving hope with opportunity for the young disabled people..

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Combining Desalination & Solar power-to-power Industrial Desert Greenhouses and building a Co-Operative Farmers Network (Sector: Environment, Food Security)

GreenHouse@EgyptNegma.org

As you are aware, Egypt has a population of 80 million people and food prices doubling by 2030 according to Oxfam, Egypt must find new ways to grow food to help grow its economy in other sectors and to soften the increase in food prices to its citizens. Food security is a pan-national issue for the Middle East North Africa (MENA) governments as they grapple with the basic needs of a growing population. The Project I am proposing will be located in the Sinai Peninsula and encompasses growing greenhouse vegetables and other agricultural goods using the following technologies Hydroponic, Solar power and desalinated water. I would like to build this pilot plant to prove the financial feasibility of producing agricultural goods using all three technologies, while minimizing the ecological footprint to the environment. This project has never been done in a larger scale. If successful the project could provide increased food security to Egypt and the wider MENA region and return Egypt to becoming a breadbasket to MENA region and beyond.

Eiman Raouf

Biography

Video

Eiman Raouf has over 10 years of experience within the agriculture and food industry. He has worked in various areas in the industry including: Quality Assurance, Product development, Operations and for various food manufacturers.
Eiman Raouf received his Bachelor Degree at the University of British Columbia in Food, Nutrition and Health, majoring in Food Science. Eiman has also completed a Masters in Business Administration from Royal Roads University, majoring in Management consulting.

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Using Self-Help Models to Improve Social Service Programs in Egypt and Provide Inclusive Services for People with Disabilities (Sector: Social)

SelfHelpModels@egyptNegma.org

Trade liberalization regulations and the failed policies of the former regime have contributed to the ongoing deterioration of public social services programs in Egypt, having a deleterious effect on those with no alternative mechanisms of support. Today, rather than employ the top-down approach of the past, the new government must collaborate with both the private sector and civil society in order to develop new programs and reform existing social services provided across various sectors, including education, healthcare, infrastructure, etc. By engaging multiple stakeholders in designing and monitoring these social service programs, the prospects for local ownership and sustainability are greatly increased.
This presentation will discuss how to approach this process of social service reform through utilization of self-help groups. When technical assistance is lacking, self-help groups (or peer support groups) can be just as effective, or perhaps more effective in identifying problems and creating practical solutions to help incubate and reform social service programs in Egypt. Based on a model first used by disability organizations, the goal of peer support is to guide individuals through the process of setting goals for themselves that will enable them to become productive and valuable members of the community. The value placed on peer support in empowering people is paramount and unique, and the significance of a system that values peer-to-peer relationships is often overlooked by a society that is accustomed to valuing the opinion of professionals and “experts” over the goals and needs of the beneficiary. The model has successfully been utilized to design social services programs for people with disabilities in Iraq and in Jordan, and can be successfully adapted to the Egypt context.

Karen Saba

Biography

Video

Currently an Advisor for Bridging the Divide, Karen Saba has extensive experience working in the Middle East, where she has designed and implemented refugee assistance programs for people with disabilities, conducted numerous empowerment and sensitivity awareness trainings, and led capacity building activities for civil society organizations, governments, and universities throughout the region. As the Regional Disability Manager for the Middle East for Mercy Corps, Ms Saba has designed and implemented refugee assistance programs covering life saving services, refugee resettlement for people with disabilities. She has conducted numerous trainings to directly empower people with disabilities and has provided sensitivity (awareness) training on disability for institutional capacity building to civil society organizations, governments, and universities throughout the Middle East. As a consultant for the World Bank, she co-drafted the first strategic report on mainstreaming the disability population throughout the Middle East and North Africa region. Ms. Saba has worked for the Presidential Taskforce on Employment of Adults and Youth with Disabilities under the Clinton administration. An Egyptian Native, Karen Saba holds a master’s degree in International Development from American University, Washington DC. and speaks fluent Arabic, French and English. She has published several articles on education and Disability Rights; and has completed several research studies on people with disabilities in the areas of economic development, including a field study in southern Africa examining the impact of Apartheid on the post-apartheid special education system. She is an expert in understanding how culture, poverty, modernization, bureaucracy and foreign aid impact the identity of people with disabilities worldwide.

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YALLA (Youth Academy for Leadership, Learning, and Advancement) (Sector: Social)

Yalla@EgyptNegma.org

YALLA (Youth Academy of Leadership, Learning, and Advancement) is an initiative to start and develop a exceptional school system that provides quality education targeted towards the poorest communities in Egypt. The three-fold mission of YALLA is to ensure that 100% of YALLA students are accepted into public or private university, to become a hub of educational research and development in Egypt, and to sustain a movement around educational reform and communal development. Through working to accomplish these objectives, YALLA will not only enter the growing dialogue about educational reform in Egypt, but will become a leader in modeling successful reform, initiating collaboration among Egyptian schools, and engaging in research and development of innovative educational systems and policy.
 
 

Amereah Elsamadicy

Biography

Video

Amearah is currently teaching 6th grade at YES Prep Public Schools - an exemplary charter school district in Houston, TX. She is also serving in her second year of Teach for America; a program centered on closing the educational achievement gap by placing ambitious graduates in low income communities to teach for a period of two years. Amearah graduated from Vanderbilt University (2010) with a degree in History (Honors) and a minor in Islamic Studies. She plans to pursue educational development on an international scale by launching her project: YALLA (Youth Academy of Leadership, Learning, and Advancement).

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Presto Wireless (Sector: Technology;Internet; Infrastructure)

Presto@EgyptNegma.org

The Business: Presto Wireless is developing an innovative solution that enables wired and wireless data customers to experience dramatically faster transfer speeds and much higher availability and reliability than that available data networks. Presto Wireless has developed software that intelligently splits and transmits portions of a customer’s data simultaneously through multiple wireless and wired networks in parallel, optimally aggregating the capacity and coverage of multiple networks, including both cellular networks, WiFi networks and even wired networks.
Target Market: Presto is targeting elite road warriors and wired Internet users who are eager for high speed Internet. Presto will partner with Internet providers who deliver both wired and wireless services to its customers and will license the software to them, so their users can use both connections at the same time. Also Presto will make its software available online for download, so any user worldwide can use it to combine multiple Internet connections together and enjoy a faster and more reliable connection. Presto has already contacted Vodafone in Egypt, who showed an interest in our technology and emphasized the great opportunity that Presto can have with Vodafone locally and globally.

Alaa Khalifeh

Biography

Video

Dr. Khalifeh received his Ph.D.  in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of California, Irvine (UCI) in 2010. He joined the Digital Media Engineering and Technology at the German University in Cairo (GUC) as a faculty member on Sep 2010. While at UCI, he and his colleagues started a new start up company called Presto Wireless, which aims at increasing the Internet speed over the wireless networks. He then moved to Egypt to further develop the idea and to address both the Egyptian and American market. Mr. Khalifeh is the recipient of the Fulbright scholarship (2005–2007) sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the United States Department of State. In April 2008, he was selected as a Pedagogical Fellow (PF) by the University of California. His  research is in communications technology and networking with particular emphasis on optimal resource allocations for audio and video transmission over wired and wireless networks.

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A Business Model for Creating a Demand for Egyptian Goods (Sector: Industry)

MadeInEgypt@EgyptNegma.org

The purpose of this project is to provide a sustainable, vertically integrated system for creating global demand for Egyptian goods, thereby supporting the development of a more diverse economic model. This project is sustainable and scalable as its foundational effort in the creation of a competent, responsive and skillful workforce within the textile industry and supply chain. The goal also is to re-introduce the “Made in Egypt” brand and provide an essential process for future business endeavors within the different economic industries in the country. This project will create the demand for some textile products andre-introduce Egyptian manufacturers to buyers in the US Market through a supply chain model. Launch the Minuteman High School workforce education and development model that has proven its capacity to create economic opportunity in a variety of industry sectors. It will create a sustainable skilled workforce and create long-term employability across different levels of targeted industries. The fully implemented systems will improve communication between suppliers and buyers as well as provide the workforce that will support such a model.

Michael Armanious

Biography

Video

Michael is business analyst/project manager; he has over 25 years of Information Technology experience with emphasis on business analysis, Lean education, consultative approach and business intelligence in the public and private sectors.
He is the founder & Executive Director of MA Technology. A consulting and software development firm focused on making the vocational education process more competitive for an innovation-driven economy. By using a Lean process optimization, and focused on career preparation. The firm has developed an optimal (vocational education) supply chain model to meet the market needs for Middle skilled workers.
Michael holds a Global MBA and a Masters in operations and project management (quantitative analysis, supply chain, and Six Sigma) from Southern New Hampshire University.

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Teach for Egypt (Sector: Education)

TeachForEgypt@EgyptNegma.org

Reform of the Egyptian education sector is long over-due and essential in redressing societal ills including poverty, gender or class-based inequities, and intolerance. Although the state has promised educational access for all of its citizens, a culture of elitism has developed in light of the stark differences between private and public education establishments. An exclusive private education system is enjoyed by the minority, while the majority of Egyptian students receive a poor education from government and low-income private schools. The state school system is broken with its overcrowded classrooms, large class sizes, and unmotivated teachers who promote memorization at the expense of critical thinking, problem solving, teamwork and innovation in the classroom.Teach for Egypt seeks to battle education inequality by empowering young leaders to make an immediate difference in their societies. Based on a popular model that has been successfully implemented in countries across the globe, Teach for Egypt will recruit ambitious college graduates to commit to a two-year service in which they are trained extensively, and placed in underprivileged schools to employ creative and effective teaching strategies in their classrooms. These teachers will help ensure that students are instilled with the educational opportunities they deserve and are not limited by socioeconomic factors, ultimately widening students' visions about their futures and creating opportunities towards higher standards of living. By infusing the education sector with well-equipped leaders who have been inspired by the drive of the revolution, Teach for Egypt will, in the long run, create a movement of informed leaders who are invested to work both within the classroom and across various sectors to fight educational inequality in Egypt.

Nada Ramadan

Biography

Video

Nada is completing her masters in Arab Studies at Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service, where she holds the Suad Juffali Scholarship for academic achievement and contribution to the field. Her work has focused on gender, human rights, and religious and political movements in Egypt. After conducting fieldwork in Egypt, she is currently writing a thesis examining women’s participation in the January 25 revolution and the changes in their roles and rights during the transitional period. She graduated from Stanford University with a BA in International Relations and History where she was involved in activism particularly as President of the Muslim Student Awareness Network.
Nada is passionate about the transformation power of education and has been involved in various educational initiatives in the Middle East and the US. This includes: leading an English-learning summer program for Saudi students, evaluating a conflict resolution class for Egyptian professionals at Alexandria Library’s Institute of Peace, tutoring disadvantaged minorities in the US, and teaching and devising a course for Stanford undergraduates about the Muslim-American community. She hopes Teach for Egypt will inspire youth to make a difference through the rewarding experience of teaching, and ultimately create a movement that will revolutionize the Egyptian educational system.

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International Institute of Knowledge (Sector: Social)

KnowledgeInst@EgyptNegma.org

The mission: To assist in building a generation of Egyptians who use objective and research based knowledge in their daily lives. The process: The International Institute of Knowledge (IIK) is an educational organization that teaches young professionals, teachers, small business owners, doctors, counselors, religious clerks, politicians, handymen, families and scientists, the up to date and evidenced based knowledge in their area of work. Teaching process will be through short and affordable courses/workshops that is run by highly educated Egyptians who visit Egypt for 2-3 days as a part of a very sophisticated and organized annual schedule. IIK is not a standard school or university, but is a short intensive educational institute for Egyptian professionals from all aspects of the life.

Mohamed Elsamra

Biography

Video

Mohamed Elsamra is a physician who graduated from University of Alexandria, Egypt and came to the United States to work as a Post-doctoral research associate at Yale University. He completed his clinical residency in the University of Connecticut and he is board certified in Psychiatry and Neurology. He dedicates half of his time to non profit work in America and Egypt, and he is a co-founder of UMAA youth center and the Egyptian Association for Justice and Development. He enjoys mentoring and educating youths and he engages in many campaigns for family development and counseling in United States and Egypt. He is currently the Medical Director of the Sound Community Services in Connecticut and he pursues more education in public policies and international affairs. He is married and a father of a beautiful girl. One of his team's main beliefs that Egyptians have the potential to build the new Egypt only with unity, patience and knowledge and that Egypt can compete globally in all aspects of life.

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Fab Lab: The First Fabrication Lab Initiative in Egypt (Sector: Education; Technology and Innovation)

FabLab@EgyptNegma.org

“Knowledge is derived from experience, and actively constructed and re-constructed by subjects in interaction with their worlds.” -Edith Ackermann, 2007 This project aims at creating Egypt’s first digital fabrication lab (Fab Lab Egypt), as a first step in extending fab-labs all over Egypt, which serve the whole Egyptian community including inventors, students and researchers. This project aims at introducing the environment in which an individual or a group can design whatever they can imagine, model it on computers and then fabricate this design physically. This hands-on learning and engagement, fosters the culture of creation, invention and exploration. In addition to that, technology-based learning means are considered essential features for developing the users’ capability and skills. Digital fabrication labs are used worldwide in schools to provide the students with those experiences and skills.
A fabrication lab is generally equipped with a group of computer-controlled tools that cover several different length scales and various materials, with the aim to make "almost anything".Fab Lab Egypt is a lab containing the tools and machines that enable the users to design 3D objects and then fabricate those designs into their actual 3D representation. In addition, it will give them the skills to create their own electronic boards and program them. Through conducted workshops in the lab, the users will learn about the processes, lessons, and insights through examples and hands-on demonstrations of fabrication software and hardware to design and build physical prototypes.
The Typical fabrication lab would have at least:

  • Laser cutter: those machines cut sheet material in 2D(two dimensional) including, Plexiglass, plastic sheets, wood boards and paper (dimensions 36 * 36 inches).
  • Water jet cutter– those machines cuts marble, metals and Plexiglass in 3D and 5D.
  • CNC machines – computer controlled mills, lathes, etc which cuts in 2D and 3D large board of wood or any solid material.
  • Rapid prototyper – essentially 3D printing with plastic.
  • Printed circuit board milling.
  • Electronics parts, soldering irons and any related equipment.

As a start, the project will be working in three paths in parallel. On one hand, three main fabrication labs will be created in three different sectors. In parallel, another three mobile mini fab labs will be created that serve 50 high schools in the first year. In order to create the fabrication community between students, the main Fab Lab will create a competition every summer between teams of students presenting their work between the schools, and awarding them prizes. The Third part will be connecting Fab Lab Egypt to the international Fab Lab community including the MIT Fab Lab in Massachusetts, USA.

Dina El-Zanfaly

Biography

Video

Dina is a PhD candidate in the Design and Computation group, Department of Architecture, at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). She earned her Master of Science in Architecture Studies (SMArchS) in Design and Computation, from MIT, in 2011, where she was a Fulbright Scholar. She also holds a MSc (2009) and a BSc (2006) in Architecture from Alexandria University, Egypt, where she holds a teaching position.
Dina also worked as a research assistant at MIT on the Egyptian Architecture of the 20th century. In addition, she worked for an international architectural firm in Egypt, focusing on architectural and urban planning projects in Egypt and the Middle East. Her work included the urban development of the Egyptian village, and the renovation of Old Cairo’s Al-Mo’iz street. Dina’s current research focus is design technology, teaching creativity and human-machine interaction.

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Egypt Point (Sector: Arts/Culture)

EgyptPoint@EgyptNegma.org

Egypt Point Is an independent foundation working on creating a space for direct exchange and sharing experiences to authenticate modern arts. The foundation works on the activation of the work between the foundations of civil society and the contemporary cultural status outside of main cities. It aims to exchange cultural endeavors between Egypt, the Middle East and the entire world. It is a non-profit cultural initiative aiming to create new places and new generation of artists able to interact between arts and developmental projects aiming for new spectacles in new places to reduce conflicts, and to reassure dialogues by making the people come together, and associate the local culture with the universal culture. Objectives: 1) Working on the expansion of cultural exchanges on the local and universal levels. 2) Working on moving contemporary artistic experiences by continuous programs. 3) Working on supporting art works and building an archive for contemporary artistic movements and trends. 4) Working on founding a continuous program to activate the role of the arts in the development of local societies and support traditional crafts in Upper Egypt.

Mohamed El Masry

Biography

Video

Based in Cairo, Egyptian artist and photographer Mohamed Elmasry has received a bachelor's degree from Art Education College, Helwan University, 2004. He has studied intensive programs in visual arts and their social role, and how to employ arts to serve the society, correct behaviors, and practice social guidance. He has also received a diploma in photography and painting from Helwan University in 2006. He is a founding member in Olympic Fine Arts, a league for the winners of the Olympics golden medals in arts; a member in African media on the road to 2010 (and beyond) and a representative of Africa's Colors Network in Egypt and North Africa. He participated in a number of biennales and cultural festivals from 2000 to 2012 in Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco, Germany, China, Indonesia, India, Zambia, Ethiopia, and Italy. He has won several awards, most importantly The Golden Medal for Arts in Beijing Olympics in 2008, The Olympic Torch of the winter Olympics in Toronto in 2006, and the Memorial Medal of Mallorca City- Bosnia. Some museums and institutions have acquired his artworks in Cairo (The Museum of Egyptian Modern Arts), Indonesia, Madrid, Beijing (The Olympics Museum), and Bosnia.

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