Coptic Orphans

Coptic Orphans is an award-winning international Christian development organization that unlocks the God-given potential of disadvantaged children in Egypt, and so equips them to break the cycle of poverty and become change-makers in their communities. Coptic Orphans works through grassroots partner and volunteer networks to strengthen local communities for sustainable impact. Since 1988, Coptic Orphans has equipped over 30,000 children throughout Egypt.
Jun 13, 2012

B'edaya Annual Cycle 2011 Final Report

The project year started in December with 74 active projects in Assiut, Minia, Monofiya

and some slum areas in Cairo. Projects funded were in one of three categories: 1) Services such as a beauty salon; 2) Livestock such as raising poultry and cattle and 3) Retail such as a grocery store or a retail store selling shoes and outfits 
following the unrest in Egypt, some projects faced challenging times due to the decrease in demand for services and products and the rocketing prices for animal feed.
 
Nonetheless, B’edaya’s Portfolio at Risk--Total outstanding balance of loans past due, divided by the active portfolio--stayed at 0.7% -- a record low. The repayment percentage for all projects is 99.3%.
Here is a story of one of the women this project helped during the previous period:
 
Awatef Kamel Abdel Messih, Monofiya (Lower Egypt)

Awatef's late husband worked in a grocery store before he died of a heart attack in 2001. He left Awatef behind to care for their five children. Unlike Hoda who at least had a pension to live on, Awatef and her family did not have any income before she started her B’edaya project. The family lived in a one-floor house made of bricks with barely any furniture.
Awatef started a poultry-raising project. She bought chicks and ducklings as she knew how to care for them and also had space available. When starting her project, she was smart enough not to invest all the money in buying birds; she kept a portion of the money to buy food. As the cycle of the project was fast, she quickly brought in income. This was key to the continuation of the project particularly because buying food for her chicks and ducklings was getting expensive day by day. Another challenge was the winter season which was taking a toll on the birds. Awatef did her best to keep them healthy by seeking veterinary care and keeping them in a warm place. To expand her project, Awatef started raising pigeons. She is now planning on having a little farm where she can raise birds as well as rabbits. In terms of repayment, she maintained a 100% repayment. Her project made a total net profit of EGP 2,350. Awatef said she was now able to give her children an allowance to buy what they liked. In addition, the project
brought in enough money for Awatef to financially support her son’s familyAttached is a fully transparent report that includes budgets and actuals, lessons learned, results, and five stories among the widowed mothers that the project supported. 

Attachments:
May 29, 2012

Shenouda's Water Buffalo

Shenouda and His Family
Shenouda and His Family's Buffalo.

It has been a tumultuous year for many in Egypt. The price of cooking fuel and food have both skyrocketed. Meanwhile, the streets of many villages remain unsafe. Both have been especially hard on widowed families. This made microfinance projects funded by Coptic Orphans life-saving for many widows throughout Egypt.  

Shenouda, a 13-year-old boy from the town of Manfalout in Upper Egypt, recently became the proud father a new calf buffalo. The buffalo is not only a point of pride for Shenouda, but a real means of livelihood for him and his widowed mother.

Prudent savings from Coptic Orphans contributions enabled him to purchase the buffalo. “I bought it to help us in our life,” he says proudly as he strokes the animal. His mother has also been inspired to raise a water buffalo herself to help support the family, embodying the purpose of B'edaya.

Shenouda's mother then lead the way in their family. When she realized she could provide, she helped Shenouda become more self-sufficient, too. 

He says today that he has a deeper sense of responsibility and integrity after these experiences.

Grateful for this means to earn a living for his family and more, Shenouda plans on sharing the butter and cheese that he produces from the buffalo with others in his village.

Links:

May 10, 2012

Valuable Girl Projects Proves Its Sustainability

Girls show off hands-on crafts on training topic
Girls show off hands-on crafts on training topic

Since 2010, Coptic Orphans has been handing its sites that have continued for an initial 4-year seed period over to the hands of local partners.

Local Egyptian schools, churches, NGO's, and community development associations - the unique public village volunteer associations that look after education, healthcare, economic and social needs of each community - have carried four Valuable Girl Project sites into permanent local supervision.

Among those most recently was our site in Luxor. The indigenous Egyptian Association for Development and Vocational Training carried the site forth.

This has been proof for us that when we plant these sites around Egypt, they do have the strength to grow on their own. Villages say that the sites change their way of thinking about girls. One girl said, "before the project, I was not allowed to even cross the street and buy a coke. But now my family asks my opinion on important decisions." Every contribution helps us transform another village and community.

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In the Valuable Girl Project, Coptic Orphans builds self-esteem in girls at risk of dropping out of school in order to promote academic retention and access to civil and social rights through mentoring between “little sisters” in primary school and “big sisters” in secondary school and university.

Girls enjoy an oasis of social and educational freedom at local program centers. Advocacy visits to the homes and
schools of participants help girls take this freedom with them into daily life.

Hands-on training at same Luxor site in 2012
Hands-on training at same Luxor site in 2012

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