Crafted by Refugees

Yadawee is partnering with Maya Eco to support local communities across different countries and cultures along the Nile and Furat rivers. These individual artisans are getting trained in design, startup management and basic financial literacy, with a particular focus on disadvantaged and underemployed women and youth in Cairo as well as more distant governorates. Our partnership will allow local artisans to connect with our customers and the Gulf Region through an online platform. NilFurat, is an initiative run by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) that aimed to empower women in countries around the Nile and Furat rivers by teaching them creative skills. Nilfurat is a group of women from “almost all nationalities” and cultures: Egyptians, Syrians, Ethiopians, Sudanese.

They started with learning very simple handicrafts: needle and thread work. They learned decent skills at the beginning like designing a product, concept, drawing and production – to take it from an idea to a product. Nilfurat women underwent extensive training and now we can sew, print, design and produce a full product. Almost Six years later, NilFurat is still going strong, and now serves as a ‘cluster’ – or creative hub – for Yadawee, a social enterprise that produces and exports Egyptian handicrafts. While NilFurat originally set out to help refugee artisans secure sustainable incomes and to foster creative talents from different cultures, the artisans have found it also provides a (perhaps unexpected) support community, and a chance to make a new start. 

By partnering with NilFurat, we hope to contribute to the positive changes and create even more opportunities for the local region. In doing so, we can provide these communities with the entrepreneurship skills and independence that will allow them to thrive both creatively and economically.