Vulnerable children are shown the "colours of strength" in Egypt

Azza Kamel set up Alwan wa Awtar in 2005 to provide a safe haven for vulnerable children in Eygpt. She talks to Pioneers Post's founding editor Tim West at the Opportnity Collaboration gathering in Mexico about why she set up the organisation and the challenges she has faced in growing it.

Alwan wa Awtar aims to target young people in marginalised communities who have little or no access to after-school activities such as performing arts, music and visual art. At the Alwan wa Awtar centre young people are encouraged to explore their creative potential and intellectual abilities in a stimulating non-judgmental environment.

Many of the children supported by Azza and her team have also experienced some form of abuse – physical, psychological or sexual – and so the centre provides them with a safe haven where they can come to terms with some of the things that have happened to them, build their confidence and be surrounded by people they trust and who respect them. 



Unfortunately, during the summer of 2014 – after Tim West met with Azza in Mexico – Alwan wa Awtar has had to temporarily cease its activities. They have been told they have to move out of the building they have been based in for over eight years. Azza and her team plan to continue their work as soon as they have managed to relocate to a different premises.