Egypt’s Minister of International Cooperation, Dr. Rania Al-Mashat, met with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), development partners, and the private sector to discuss how to expand the Egypt Network for Integrated Development (ENID) to more “Hayah Karima” villages.

Egypt’s Minister of International Cooperation, Dr. Rania Al-Mashat, said that the government is committed to strengthening the integration of the Egypt Network for Integrated Development (ENID) and the Hayah Karima initiative under the umbrella of the strategic framework for the partnership between Egypt and the United Nations 2023-2027.

Dr. Heba Handousa, the Director of ENID, reviewed the work priorities and integration between ENID and Hayah Karima until 2026. She said that ENID is working to support the implementation of the Hayah Karima initiative in nine of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Egypt, Mr. Alessandro Fracassetti, said that the UNDP is looking forward to integrating with the Hayah Karima initiative to enhance efforts to raise the standard of living of the lowest-income groups in Egypt.
The meeting highlighted the success of ENID’s work in rural areas, with more than 100,000 people benefiting from its activities and projects.

The Minister of International Cooperation, H.E. Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat, hosted a high-level consultative session to discuss the new expansions in the projects of the Egypt Network for Integrated Development (ENID) for the period from 2022-2026, in the villages of the Presidential Initiative for the Development of the Egyptian Rural Development “Hayah Karima”, with the participation of the Director Assistant to the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and Administrator of the United Nations Capital Development Fund, Dr. Mourad Wahba, Resident Representative of the UNDP in Egypt, Alessandro Fracasetti, Representative of UN Women in Egypt Christine Arab, and Director, Executive Director of the ENID Al-Nidaa Foundation and Dr. Heba Handoussa, Director of ENID, attended the meeting with representatives from the World Food Programme, the International Labour Organisation, the United States Agency for International Development, the Embassy of Canada, the Bank of Alexandria, the American University in Cairo, Laurel Company, Raya Holding Company, Tetra Pak Company, and Qalaa Holding Company, as well as the Ministry of International Cooperation’s team.

The Egypt Network for Integrated Development (ENID) is one of the national initiatives aimed at increasing the development impact of international interventions in Egypt, as well as economic and social development efforts in the most vulnerable communities, in light of international partnerships between the government, represented by the Ministry of International Cooperation, and the United Nations, represented by the United Nations Development Program.

Since it started in 2012, ENID has been working to create long-term, good-paying jobs in Upper Egypt through four programs: improving essential services, supporting small businesses and entrepreneurs, sustainable agriculture, and knowledge sharing.

In her speech, Al-Mashat welcomed attendees from development partners, civil society organizations, and the private sector, emphasising the importance of the project team and ENID in promoting development in Upper Egypt’s most vulnerable villages, which face high levels of poverty and development challenges. H.E emphasised that many achievements were made during the previous phase of the project, through various interventions and project activities that aim for real change, particularly at the level of supporting women and entrepreneurs, raising living standards, and addressing the gender gap, in a way that improves SDG implementation.

Rania Al-Mashat stated that since 2012, the joint project between the Ministry of International Cooperation and the UNDP has implemented many activities and interventions that have contributed to a transformation in the lives of thousands of citizens in Upper Egypt, as well as strengthening sustainable value chains by supporting productive projects in close collaboration with the private sector, emphasising that in light of the global development challenges.

Rania Al-Mashat thanked Dr. Heba Handoussa for the ENID Foundation’s work in villages that need services and development. She also thanked the UNDP for their support and funding. She explained that the next phase of their work will focus on the villages of the Hayah Karima Initiative, and that it will be part of the UNSDCF 2023-2027. She said that they will communicate with various partners to discuss future work priorities and mobilize efforts to integrate ENID and the Hayah Karima Initiative.

Handoussa presented ENID’s most significant achievements in Upper Egypt, where it implemented nearly 50 interventions in 119 villages, directly and indirectly benefiting over 100,000 people. These interventions created around 4,000 jobs and trained more than 2,150 women in handicrafts. ENID carried out these efforts in collaboration with 11 ministries, 5 governorates, and more than 70 local community organizations in Upper Egypt. She explained that the development initiatives carried out in Upper Egypt helped to boost 51 indicators across nine SDGs.

Dr. Heba Handoussa outlined ENID’s plans to collaborate with the Hayah Karima Initiative from 2022 to 2026. She stated that ENID would share knowledge, develop capacity, and partner with development organizations to develop digital solutions. ENID will also prioritize the private sector and entrepreneurship. ENID’s interventions are already aligned with many national initiatives, including Hayah Karima, by helping to improve the lives and livelihoods of rural communities, increase the income of the poorest rural families, and empower women and youth economically and socially through appropriate projects. It is a pioneer in a variety of activities, including agricultural, service, industrial, and craft workshops, improving basic services and literacy classes, developing nurseries for children, and contributing to the ongoing improvement of food and nutritional security conditions at the family and village levels, with a focus on women and children. Fracassetti praised the successful partnership between the UNDP and the Ministry of International Cooperation, which has led to the expansion of ENID. He also mentioned that ENID has trained over 21,000 people and helped create 4,000 jobs, with 75% of those jobs going to women. ENID has also supported efforts to implement 9 of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, with a focus on reducing poverty, promoting gender equality, and empowering women. Fracasetti emphasized that ENID seeks to deepen its integration and coordination with the “Haya Karima” initiative in order to enhance efforts to improve the standard of living for the lowest-income groups in Egypt. It should be noted that a celebration was conducted in November 2022 at the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization, during which the Ministry of International Cooperation, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the UNDP signed the agreement establishing the new phase of ENID in Egypt.

The next five years of the ENID project will cost $31.7 million, with the United Nations Development Program providing $100,000 in support.

The new phase of the project will focus on improving the declining social and economic conditions in Upper Egypt using integrated methods to achieve comprehensive and sustainable growth. It will draw on lessons learned and experiences gained from the previous stage of the project, which began in 2021, and expand its geographical coverage.

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