Entrepreneurs in Egypt: Dr Raghda Elebrashi
Young entrepreneurs in Egypt are part of a new wave of self-employment sweeping the nation, and Mostafa Shahat interviews them.
Entrepreneurship, for an emerging economy like Egypt, is critical for growth. Dr Raghda Elebrashi is one of the changemakers whose efforts and contributions have increased underprivileged families’ income in the last ten years.
Dr Raghda is a social entrepreneur who established one of the most well-known economic development NGOs in Egypt: AYB (Alshanek Ya Balady), which means in English ‘for the sake of my country’.
In 2010, Dr Raghda earned her PhD degree from German University in Cairo (GUC) and is currently working there as an Assistant Professor of Strategic Management, her area of expertise.
AYB was founded in 2005 by Dr Raghda and five other co-founders who believed that marginalised areas deserve more attention. AYB’s efforts to support underprivileged people include enhancing their employment skills by offering vocational training and placing them in suitable jobs opportunities with on-going career coaching. It also offers financial and/or business counselling support to those with an entrepreneurial idea.
In the last ten years, Dr Raghda has established AYB branches in ten governorates. Each governorate’s branch is supported by 300 volunteers who dedicate their time to support AYB in its mission.
‘I see AYB volunteers who believed in AYB’s mission and have done their best to achieve it, as CSR managers in companies, PhD students in the best universities in the world, NGOs founders and activists,’ says Dr Raghda.
More than 30,000 students in the last decade have volunteered for AYB, and the organisation has supported more than 10,000 entrepreneurs in Egypt to start their own businesses in marginalised areas.
Dr Raghda has won many international awards for her leadership and contributions to the Egyptian economy: from the Ashoka fellowship in 2010, to being selected as one of the best and active Young Global Leaders from among 5000 nominated leaders from all over the world, to being awarded with the King Abdullah Award for Youth Innovation and Achievement.
She was also selected as one of the 22 Arab Social Innovators and received the Synergos Fellowship, and in 2007, she was selected as one of the best 100 global young social entrepreneurs in the world by the Global Knowledge Partnership foundation.
Article submitted by Mostafa Shahat, the volunteer responsible for Arabic guest bloggers in the MENA region and an African Egyptian entrepreneur who has established one of the most successful youth communities in Egypt: Goal Oriented Learners. Mostafa has studied social entrepreneurship in the USA and is currently the Middle East & North Africa representative at StudySearch (Nigeria) and the Egypt representative for All Events in City (India). Mostafa is also a reporter at Nudge Sustainability Hub. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org and check out his other blog, A Syrian’s Success in Egypt.
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