More than 90 percent of all businesses in Egypt are small businesses, employing more than half of Egypt’s workforce.
In a time where most small businesses are struggling to weather through the pandemic financially, cooperation, solidarity and positive community initiatives have emerged as the new normal to help navigate through the crisis.
A group of more than 50 local brands in Egypt owned by women joined forces to start a new campaign ‘Hanfarahom’ (We will cheer them) to support doctors and other health workers in the medical field during these stressful times.
The Spirit of Solidarity
The campaign was first brought about by Heba Fares, founder of Naomi Hanem, who collaborated with social enterprise Entreprenelle through the Entreprenelle Hub community alongside 50 other brands– a platform which brings together all female entrepreneurs in Egypt and the region.
“They are simple efforts by us as entrepreneurs to support frontline health workers in Egypt mentally, since we see very distressing and emotionally gripping images and stories on social media everyday,” Roaa Ahmed, chief operating officer at Entreprenelle, says.
In parallel to this, the campaign also seeks to support small businesses and local brands owned by women, and to raise more public awareness on the importance of solidarity and standing with entrepreneurs during this time. “We want people to collaborate and support more local brands, even by just engaging with their pages on social media or buying their products online. It can make a big difference to them as everyone – all sectors – are struggling to get through at the moment.” Roaa Ahmed adds.
Each brand sends a minimum of four free gifts of their product to a health worker, after running online competitions on their social media pages to pick out random winners of the workers that were mentioned in the comments by their relatives or friends.
Since the outbreak of the coronavirus, businesses were hit hard as a result of the drop in consumption. As a result of this, many local brands began to rely on one another for support, particularly through social media.
Rather than it being just an advertorial experience, it is also a personal, supportive and genuine experience to help the Egyptian local market thrive and also open the door for more women-owned businesses.
“We want people to contribute and share with us their ideas or initiatives so that we can collaborate, since this is a very opportune time for collaboration and partnerships,” Roaa Ahmed says.
To show support for the women-owned local brands:
CHI, Areej joud, Fsquare Aeriel arts, Naomi Hanem, Yasmin Yousri, Heba el Kaissy, Mama fel Shoghal, Bless EG, Essentials EG, Ola Azzam Designs, Boho Rings, Sara Abo Tira, Maie Zafer Designs, Lilly’s Accessories, The Missing Piece, Versatile, Dodz.artof.letters, COY, Jumbo Tronics, Glow Accessories, Home Line.eg, Al Sharq Silver, The Tiffany Box, 7erfa, Nada Talaat For Home Accessories, (Sof W Hareer)صوف و حرير, Yasmina’s Art, JEVAN, AZAAR, MELOSA, Manno Crafts, H&S Home, Sotrah Scarves, Amici Scarves, Why Nut, Châteaux Chic, Knots&Stitches, Vexls, Didi Asks, Walaa Haggag, Jewellery, Nūn-نون, Recycology, Noha’s Signature Abayas, TheVeil Design, Paiete, Amira Nesim, Hend Shehata, Banana Women Wear, Le Voile Scarfs, Modesta.