Taima AL-Rafayia

Taima is an ambitious young woman working in the community sector. She has strived and worked to reach her goals by becoming a young leader who spread justice and peace, interested in human rights, environment, and leadership.

She obtained a degree in “Leadership” from Harvard Business School. Moreover, she was an intern at Friedrich Ebert Stiftung and, she got a second place for innovate an application that works to protect women in the 14th Regional Youth and Technology conference.

She got a first place in public speaking competition in Jordan.

Omar Talaat

Omar started his journey in the development field when he was 15 moved by the positive spirit after 2011. He started an initiative in their neighbourhood to clean its streets and engage the inhabitants of the neighbourhood.

During his studies in Engineering at Cairo university, he participated in many student activities, and he became the president of one of the most effective student activities which was working as a media platform for the students.

Omar is focusing now on developing the ecosystems by helping in the creation of collaborative communities through his work at ElRehla. In particular, he hosts unconventional retreat experiences focusing on gathering the stakeholders of a certain sector to accelerate building communities through connecting both personally and professionally.

Omar hopes to explore the opportunities by his role as a Partnership Specialist to create more impact within the development sector by creating more collaborations and helping in creating more initiatives.

Heba Shama

Heba Shama

Heba Shama is an architect with a Bachelor of Science in Architectural Engineering from the American University in Cairo (AUC). Heba was involved in several projects that focused on reclaiming the right to public spaces and proposing physical interventions to overcome social issues such as women and girls’ safety, children’s rights to play, and encouraging mutual acceptance between local communities and refugees. Heba is currently working with Takween Integrated Community Development (ICD) in the framework of a project for the British Museum, where she works on documenting the vernacular architecture of the village of Shutb while trying to engage with the community on building a collective appreciation for the local tangible and intangible heritage.

Shama grew up in South Sinai where she is currently involved on a project, “Strengthening Protected Areas’ Financing and Management Systems,” with the Operational Unit for Development Assistance for UNDP Egypt. She is also involved as a teaching assistant for the USAID program, “English Access Micro-scholarship Program.” Heba is working as a voluntary art workshop co-facilitator with Tur-Sinai Youth Center, which collaborates effectively in delivering a diverse range of visual arts-based workshops to young children. Shama has a special interest in working on relief operations and education and refugee-oriented initiatives, especially on initiatives that focus on children.

Heba considers herself as a multidisciplinary designer. She is an architect who is interested in the visual and literary expression of cultures; a philanthropist with a strong passion to work with, learn from, and empower the local communities. This is an identity that she developed through her participation with the Lazord Fellowship. Recently, she has become a graphic designer, and sometimes considers herself as an amateur photographer who enjoys taking photos with her cellphone camera.

Israa Ahmad Al Bargoothy

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Israa Al Bargoothy’s involvement in the community started earlier in her life in high school. After being a volunteer at several centers and organizations, she decided to start her own initiative, Change a Million Souls, to help people in raising awareness for their rights and education.

She has developed a strong sense of devotion for the nonprofit sector by participating in several projects and conferences. She also has a passion for training and has recently become a certified trainer by the European Union through the Civil Society Facility South Project in Tunisia. Specialized in social accountability, she has attended several trainings in Jordan and in the Arab region, giving her a deep appreciation for how nonprofits seek to improve the quality of life for individuals and the community.