When Soha Fathy got her business administration degree in 2011, she immediately started working for Mobinil, the Egyptian subsidiary of Orange, in Cairo.
The young woman, of 24, is aware of the opportunity she has been given and is also involved with Injaz : “This organisation seeks to build a link between the education system and the working world. I had the opportunity to study at a private school and the American school in Cairo. I know that most Egyptians don’t have that chance.” The Injaz NGO uses volunteers from the business world who share their experience and give lessons that are not part of the standard curriculum : “I think it’s my duty to pass on what I’ve learned. If young people want to get ahead, a lack of means shouldn’t prevent them from doing so.”
For two months a year, Soha gives a class on environmental awareness : “I go to college every week and I explain the benefits of recycling, the importance of keeping the environment clean, and the impact it will have not only on the country’s future, but also on our own health.” Soha expects nothing in return and is often surprised at the welcome she receives : “I remember one group of girls who were very sceptical during our first meeting. I tried to show them how it was possible to transform a bottle of water, a can or a roll of toilet paper. At the end of every class we imagined what we could do with these things instead of throwing them away. On the last day, I was surprised by how creative they were. They had made a pencil case out of cardboard, and a candle out of a glass jar. These kids aren’t used to getting help and they’re very receptive to what we have to say to them. They are full of potential and they just need someone to set off that Eureka moment.”
"Sharing knowledge must never stop"
In the Mobinil human resources department, Soha organises employee training to keep people up to date with “the latest technological developments”. At Injaz she faces other training related issues. But who knows, maybe in the future her students will become her colleagues ? While she’s expecting this, Soha tries hard to spread her motto everywhere she goes : “Sharing knowledge must never stop”.
Portrait by Apolline Guichet.