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In Egypt, small farmers embrace the entrepreneurial spirit

When the Arab Spring blew over Egypt in early 2011, most investors predicted chaos and fled, pushing already massive unemployment even higher and plunging the economy into profound uncertainty. But Mohamed Embarak, a farmer in Upper Egypt, saw only opportunity. With four others, Embarak invested hismore

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In Gaza, first female mukhtarah mediates legal disputes

Um Mohammed broke the conservative tribal traditions of her community when she became one of Gaza strip’s first “Mukhtarah” – the female equivalent of Mukhtar, one who peacefully settles disputes without need to resort to formal judicial systems. “I once found myself having to intervene to resolve amore

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In Jordan, entrepreneurship skills help weather the economic storm

Refurbishing damaged diapers from a nearby factory may not be everyone’s cup of tea — but for Amira Rizk Abu Bqeira and members of her community, who have begun to feel the strain of an influx of refugees from Syria, cloth nappies are proving to be a business niche that may protect them from simore

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Lebanon: Hygiene kits improve living conditions for Syrian refugees

A Palestinian refugee from Syria and mother of two children, Rim investigates the contents of a large, blue pail with the UNDP logo on the side. “These simple items can be lifesaving,” she says, pulling out a flashlight, band-aids, a heard scarf, underwear and other items for personal hygiene. Rimmore

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In Somaliland, local communities benefit from decentralization

For Fosia Ahmed Ismail, a returnee to the Somaliland district of Hargeisa, life was hard. Many basic services were inadequately delivered, and access to authorities was limited and sometimes even unthinkable. “The local government resettled us here,” said Fosia. But infrastructure in local districtmore

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In court with the first women lawyers of Somalia

Koos was just granted her divorce. She filed for divorce after her husband deserted her, just a few months after their wedding. She gave birth to their son but never heard from her husband again. She asked Ismahan Hassan Ahmed, one of the ten women lawyers in Somaliland, to advise her and representmore

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New opportunities for women artisans in Upper Egypt

Shaimaa Abdo El Naggar, 30, lives in Qena, one of Upper Egypt’s poorest governorates, known for its low income, poor infrastructure and lack of social services. Like many others, she had to drop out from school at a young age, since education is still considered a luxury for girls in the region. Recmore

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Income brings hope to Somali families facing famine

With her two children losing weight fast and family income drying up, 26-year-old Haredo Ali, from Somalia’s southern Bakool region, was stuck at the centre of the country’s worst drought in 60 years. Her husband lost his honey-harvesting business when his bees abandoned their hive in search of nectmore

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Active participation: It’s your right!

We have been asked frequently what inspires social change in Egypt after the 25th of Jan Revolution. What has impact on policy making? What really motivates us to do social good?   Our answer was always: active participation!   Dina Atef and Christin Nabil, two activitists from the Kasr Elmore

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Inter-communal dialogue helps build a durable peace in North Lebanon

In May 2007, whilst most of Lebanon was still struggling to recover from the destruction caused by the July 2006 conflict with Israel, the infiltration of armed insurgents of Fatah al-Islam into Nahr El-Bared, a Palestinian refugee camp located between Akkar and Tripoli in North Lebanon, culminated more