In Motion: CEOSS’ newsletter

In Motion: CEOSS’ newsletter

news from the Coptic Evangelical Organization for Social Services (CEOSS)

In Motion

A Message from the General Director

A general positive shift in mission has come over civil society organizations in Egypt since the revolution began, and CEOSS is not excluded from this.

Our focus on development has been shifted to empowerment and protection of human rights.

With this shift in focus, CEOSS expects to increase our activities with marginalized groups in order to help them through Egypt’s democratic transitions as such groups such as unemployed youth, women, and low-income groups have been key actors in Egypt’s revolution.

We will also continue to focus on our microloan program, as this type of economic development will not only improve the quality of life at a grassroots level, but also create jobs at a more medium scale.


U.S Ambassador Visits Minia and CEOSS projects

The U.S. ambassador to Cairo Ms. Anne Patterson, accompanied by Mr. Mostafa Morad, Vice Governor for South Cairo, Ms. Ivana Smucker, director of Programs in HANDS Development Services Inc., Mr. Mostafa Morad, President of One Global Economy Foundation and Dr. Rev. Andrea Zaki, CEOSS General Director, inaugurated an Information Technology Center in Old Cairo established by CEOSS under the “Employment through Technology and Innovation, ETI” project in partnership with USAID, HANDS and One Global Economy.

A number of representatives of NGOs, the U.S. Embassy in Cairo and participated in the opening ceremony.

As part of the Economic Development Program that has been running, CEOSS is implementing “Employment Through Technology and Innovation” project in 10 communities in Cairo, Qalyoubeya, Minia and Beni-Suef. This project seeks to provide career opportunities to youth in poor areas in these governorates, using communication and information technology, through providing training, technical support and networking with employers and job seekers especially youth aging 18 to 30 years old who are trained on the use of modern technology.

The project aims at training and rehabilitation of 30 young males and females on interpersonal skills to be able to train other 1200 young people and transfer their knowledge to others. The project is implemented with the objective of providing internship and job opportunities to 24,000 young males and females in the targeted communities.

Media and Future Challenges in the Arab Media by CEOSS FID

CEOSS Forum for Intercultural dialogue organized a seminar entitled “Media and Future Challenges in the Arab Media” on February 20, 2013 in its headquarters attended by 35 media professionals from Cairo and Alexandria representing the different media outlets.  

“Clear improvement in the professional skills of Arab journalists has taken place, which resulted into improvement in the techniques that are used in the Arab world in the field of communication that meet the global standards”, said Yasser Abdel Aziz media expert during the seminar. Abdul Aziz also said during the interaction with journalists and media participants that the media content has become more influential and affected political mobility, focusing on the issues of the marginalized and the poor including women and minorities, providing positive interaction with new channels especially social media. He explained that using media as a tool in the political conflict presents a critical risks on the media, and that the survival of the media and its improvement is linked to institutional organization.

Jafar Shayeb, Head of the Municipal Council in Qatif province, talked about the factors that influenced the media in Saudi Arabia as a model for the Gulf States, pointing out that the electronic media has started to take a better position from printed newspapers.

The Economic Crisis and How to Overcome it- A Civil Society Vision

CEOSS CEOSS FID organized a seminar entitled: “The Economic Crisis and How to Overcome it – A Civil Society Vision”, as an attempt to contribute to overcoming the economic crisis Egypt, like any other country that witnessed a revolution, is going through. The seminar also aimed to emphasize the important role of civil society organizations in the process of economic development and transformation of the society and to define its objectives and implementation of development programs. About 185 participants varying from university professors, economists, Islamic and Christian religious leaders, intellectuals and media professionals attended the seminar.

Keynote Speakers included Salah Abdel-Maksoud, Minister of Media, Dr.Hazem Beblawy, Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs and a former Minister of Finance, Dr. Hanaa Khairuddin, a part time professor at the Faculty of Economics and Political Science at Cairo University. The seminar was facilitated by Dr. Rev. Andrea Zaki, CEOSS General Director.

“I am Free”..CEOSS 43rd Annual Staff Conference

CEOSS gives a special attention to this conference that brings together its 500 staff regardless of their administrative positions and their geographic locations to enrich dialogue and strengthen the bond between all its members. Topics discussed in the conference are chosen according to the hot social and political issues of concern to the people, especially those who work in the development field.

Due to the change taking place in this transitional period in Egypt, the conference was entitled: “I Am Free” and addressed two themes: Freedom and Spiritual Transparency. Issues discussed included: Freedom concept, different forms of freedom, personal freedom VS. civil liberties, freedom and spiritual transparency, honesty and its manifestations
The conference hosted a number of political figures, social and religious leaders, intelectuals and phyciatrists.

The seminar included a dialogue with Dr. Rev Andrea Zaki, the General Director about the CEOSS strategic directions for 2013 then a speech from the Board Chairman Ms. Mervat Akhnoukh

The ceremony ended with honoring employees who have spent over 5 years serving CEOSS.

Microloans Development Evaluation

As part of the ongoing evaluation and follow-up on Microloans Development Unit, a meeting was held to assess the actual achievement of the unit against the planned objectives in 2012 in order to determine the strengths and weaknesses, exchange experiences and develop future vision.

Over 150 staff from different working areas in Delta and Upper Egypt participated in this meeting. The unit presented its achievement in 2012 which reached 99% of the planned target. The meeting ended wirh honoring employees for outstanding achievements.

Bishop Mounir Hanna and Magdi Yacoub Foundation for Heart Diseases Win Samuel Habib Award for Distinguished Voluntary Social Work 

Mounir Hanna, Bishop of the Episcopal Church in Egypt and North Africa and Magdi Yacoub Foundation for Research and heart disease won Samuel Habib Award for Distinguished Voluntary Social Work for the current year, which is organized by the Coptic Evangelical Organization for Social Services annually.

Dr. Mervat Enoch President of CEOSS Board of Directors Delivered the awards to the winners at a ceremony on February 28, 2013 at its headquarters in Heliopolis, where Bishop Mounir Hanna and Ms. Anissa Hassouna director of Magdi Yacoub Foundation received the award, due to the presence Magdi Yacoub outside Egypt for international commitments.

CEOSS annually gives two awards, each worth 50 thousand pounds. The first is for a social leader or an NGO that played a role in helping the society regardless of sex, race or religion. The second is for a Christian leader that believes and works with the same mission. The selection of winners is done by a distinguished group of intellectuals and social and scientific expertise of the Egyptian society.

The ceremony was attended by Hamdeen Sabahi founder of Egyptian Popular Current, Dr. Ali Gomaa former Mufti, Dr. Abdel Kawi Khalifa, Minister of facilities, Dr. Osama Kamal, Governor of Cairo, and a group of intellectuals, political and social leaders, media professionals and artists.

CEOSS Organizes a Seminar on Future Challenges Facing Egypt

CEOSS FID organized a seminar entitled “Dialogue on the Social, Cultural and Economic challenges facing Egypt”, in collaboration with the Center for Future Studies at the University of Assiut. The seminar was held in Assuit University on February 23, 2013.

Keynote speakers included Dr. Osama Yassin, Minister of Youth, Dr. Yahya Koshk, Governor of Assiut, and Dr. Mohamed Kamal Mustafa, President of Assiut University.

Dr. Rev. Andrea Zaki, CEOSS General Director said, “The Egyptian society is witnessing rapid events bringing radical changes in the economic, cultural and societal system. These changes have yielded significant results, and presented new requirements and challenges for the Egyptian society”. Zaki said that the seminar discussed different ways to meet the needs of this critical period, adding that facing these challenges has become the true measure of the success of the nation.

CEOSS FID Seminar on “The Future of Social Justice in Egypt”

CEOSS FID organized a meeting entitled “The future of social justice in Egypt”, with the participation of a group of intellectuals, law professors and some Islamic and Christian religious leaders.

The meeting discussed a number of topics including: “concepts of social justice”, presented by Khalid Ali, presidential candidate and Abdul Hafiz Al-Sawi, “social, economic and cultural rights”, presented by Ahmed Nagar, researcher and Ayman El Sayad,  columnist, “the constitutional guarantees of social justice” presented by Mahmoud Khudairi, consultant, Dr. Jaber Nassar, and Dr. Mohamed Nour Farahat.

Participants also discussed the role of civil society and religious institutions in the pursuit of social justice, how to activate the use of international conventions of social justice, and the requirements of social justice.

CEOSS Dialogue about Participation and Responsibility

CEOSS Forum for Intercultural Dialogue organized a Seminar on: “Transit for the Future .. A Dialogue about Participation and Responsibility” in Alexandria in the presence of a group of intellectuals, university professors, religious leaders both Muslims and Christians, and a group of community leaders.

In this context, Dr. Rev. Andrea Zaki said that the Egyptian society needs at this stage to further unite and collaborate so that we move towards stability, with an emphasis on the principle of “citizenship”, and its principles such as “equality,” and “freedom”, and “participation”, also “social responsibility”.

CEOSS and the New NGOs Law

Dr. Rev. Andrea Zaki, CEOSS General Director, complemented the draft of the new NGOs law, presented by Freedom and Justice party, that has been put up for discussion in the Shura Council with a number of representatives of civil society, as the first law of associations issued after the January revolution, and which tackled some of the obstacles that were standing in the face of the civil society institutions to perform their role in the service of the country at this critical stage.

In this context, Dr. Zaki had some concerns on a number of articles in the draft of this law, including the presence of more than one authority to give approval on grants or donations from home and abroad to the organizations, stressing on the need to have a specialized authority concerned with grants approval and provision of how organizations spend these grants according to the law. Dr. Zaki also stressed on the need to clarify the meanings of some terms that came in the context of some articles of the law, without waiting for the issuance of the final draft.

President Morsi Visits CEOSS Pavilion in the First NGOs Forum

The Coptic Evangelical Organization for Social Services (CEOSS) participated in the first NGOs Forum held in Cairoon January 19, 2013. The forum was inaugurated by president Mohamed Morsi in the presence of a number of senior state officials and community leaders in Egypt. Dr. Rev. Andrea Zaki, CEOSS General Director, received the delegation giving a brief on the history of CEOSS and the main programs it carries out as well as beneficiaries of these projects. President Morsi expressed his appreciation for the work of CEOSS and its active role to serve the country and its people.