The preparatory workshop that covered the “Haya Karima” project was held in the Red Sea hall. During the workshop, a documentary was displayed in order to highlight projects implemented by Haya Karima in various areas of development. The workshop started off with a presentation by Ohud Wafi, Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Haya Karima, through which she gave an overview about the presidential initiative “Haya Karima” since its inception. Besides giving an overview about the achievements, Wafi illustrated how the initiative started from merely an idea suggested by the graduates of the Presidential Leadership Program (PLP) which was endorsed by the political leadership till it has become a mega project that currently targets around 4500 villages in 20 governorates across Egypt. On this occasion, she also called on other countries to replicate the “Haya karima” initiative since it is a pioneering experience in development.
In light of the workshop, Ambassador Nabila Makram, Minister of Immigration and Egyptian Expatriates Affairs, expressed her happiness due to the reconvening of the World Youth Forum (WYF) amid the COVID-19 pandemic. She stressed that the WYF is a great opportunity for empowering youth and for raising the awareness of what has been implemented in Egypt over the past few years since it is the vastest international youth gathering event. Hence, she urged all Egyptians to support the “Haya Karima” project, stressing on the significant role of Egyptian expats and praising their efforts.
Then, Iman Helmy, Economic Advisor to the Minister of Social Solidarity, also introduced the socioeconomic interventions provided by the Ministry of Social Solidarity (MoSS) in order to support “Haya Karima.” These interventions include the First 1000 Days program, the Early Detection of Disability, and Two Is Enough. Likewise, Riham Rezk, Director of the Modeling Unit in the Ministry of Planning and Economic Development, implied that the Ministry of Planning contributes to this project through the integration of the UN Sustainable development Goals (UNSDGs) and the minimization of the gaps between rural and urban areas.
By the same token, Mai Yassin, the Secretary-General of Vodafone Egypt, noted that Vodafone Egypt provides an integrated digital educational system for many schools in less than a month, to serve the aims of the project.
Reflecting on “Haya Karima,” Noha Talaat, a member of the National Council for Women (NCW), stressed on the role of the project in advancing human rights in Egypt and the needy villages in particular. Ahmed Rezq, Deputy Regional Director of the UNIDO, alluded that “Haya Karima” is a holistic development initiative since it does not focus on one area/aspect of development and it strives to raise the standard of living and promote the sense of belonging, thereby creating a social boom and combating terrorism and extremism. Also, as per Engy Mansour, Chairperson of Baladna Foundation, the “Haya Karima” project has created a cadre of volunteers.
Besides the valuable contributions of the panelists, the participants, who were divided into 3 groups, addressed the global development challenges and collected data about the development projects globally, while also suggesting numerous recommendations that will be adopted by the WYF. These recommendations include the replication of “Haya Karima” in many countries and the restructuring of resources of each country, the promotion of green transformation, the establishment of an African youth body for transferring the “Haya karima” experience to their countries, among many others.