Dr. Nasr: “The protocol aims to support Upper Egypt’s governorates, Sinai and the Red Sea Governorate within the framework of partnership between the government, NGOs and the private sector”.

On 12 February 2017, the Minister of International Cooperation Dr. Sahar Nasr and Treasurer of Misr El-Kheir Foundation Mr. Mohsen Mahgoub signed a cooperation protocol worth EGP 5 million, falling under the USD 1 million grant provided by the African Development Bank (AfDB), to support the most disadvantaged areas, in presence of Dr. Ali Gomaa, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Misr El-Kheir Foundation, and Ms. Leila Mokaddem, AfDB Resident Representative. 

The Minister stated that the protocol aimed to support the most lagging regions in 11 governorates, namely Beni Suef, Qena, Asyut, Sohag, Luxor, Aswan, Minia, North & South Sinai, the Red Sea, Alexandria and Beheira. She indicated that MoIC gave priority to Upper Egypt’s governorates within the framework of the President’s directives in the 2nd monthly National Youth Conference (NYC) held in January 2017 in Aswan. 
The protocol, indicated Dr. Nasr, came in line with partnerships between the government, NGOs and the private sector with the aim to implement the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and provide all requirements for raising standards of living, especially in the most lagging regions, while noting that MoIC signed a cooperation protocol with the Egyptian Steel and the Orman Charity Association in support of renovating and developing Egypt’s most disadvantaged villages. 
The Minister further mentioned that the protocol partially aimed to help flood victims and provide them with the necessary support, adding that discussions were underway with development partners to take precautionary measures with a view to alleviate the adverse effects of floods, including the establishment of safe housing for flood victims instead of the informal areas.
The Minister said that AfDB allocated a grant to promptly alleviate human suffering resulting from losses of lives and property as a result of the unprecedented floods in the affected areas. She explained that the grant comprised two components: the first consisting of in kind assistance to flood victims in the form of food, blankets and drugs to be distributed to the victims. The second component provides emergency pumps and sanitation networks cleansing to refine water pipes which would, in turn, facilitate rain drainage. 
Dr. Nasr also called on the private sector and NGOs to further support women in accordance with the President’s declaration that 2017 is the ‘Year of Women’.
In addition, the Minister explained that she practically worked on the achievement of sustainable development nationwide, on the basis of the statistics provided by the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) on the most disadvantaged governorates and according to communicating with citizens and the parliament through the Minister’s various visits to identify challenges and needs of each governorate. This in addition to ‘Sharek’ Initiative launched to communicate with citizens and the civil society, given that implementation commenced in Sinai, Upper Egypt and Marsa Matrouh being among the most lagging areas.
For his part, Dr. Gomaa expressed his appreciation of the Minister for her support of the NGOs in order to improve standards of living and contribute to human development, indicating that they were determined to eliminate unemployment by providing more job opportunities. He further said that Misr El-Kheir Foundation had 170 projects that would be implemented on the basis of a continuously updated database that identifies the most lagging areas.
Mr. Mahgoub clarified that the Foundation targeted human integrated development in border and most disadvantaged governorates, while thanking the Minister for being active and for visiting such governorates.