All posts by enactus

Rehab

REHABPeople choose to wipe off the windows of jewelry shops and to get dazzled by the glittering diamonds. They choose to stand still in front of these glossed up windows for hours or even days. They simply choose to watch the enchanting rubies and contemplate the beauty of rare emeralds, and then they eventually carry on with their daily lives.

But we chose to witness the creation of these diamonds under pressure and to get even blinded with the radiating, yet unraveled mines. We chose to wipe off all the mud and to mold all of these gemstones into unique pieces of jewelry. We believe that humans are not that different from gemstones; some of them were lucky to be displayed at the showrooms of fancy shops, while others remained undiscovered deep down the center of Earth.

That’s why we chose to take a leap of faith and reach out to young girls whose lives, according to others, were a series of misfortunes; that’s why they were always treated like outsiders. Bearing in mind that,
“Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, and penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope.” – Maya Angelou

We believe that they deserve to have a better future and a brand new chapter in life. We empower them and prove to the whole world that they can be self dependent. We, Enactus Mansoura, have set a clear path with a clear vision to pick up these gemstones and show their worth.

We established “Rehab” : a systematic project that teaches these boys and girls many different crafts and even uses their skills to make valuable products as the prothesis of InShape project. We believe that they can be entrepreneurs and that they can lead a successful life.

We help them to achieve stability in their lives, not only by words, but also through teaching the girls simple crafts that suit their age and abilities. They participate in making the products of InShape project. This is where women help other women. We empower them to lead their lives independently by teaching them how to take responsibility and make their own living.

These kids need to know that they don’t pay for their mistakes twice and that they shouldn’t live in the past anymore.

We simply chose to put these gems just in the right place.

Enactus

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Have a look at your fingertips. Look at those very fine lines forming your
fingerprint. They are way different, but they are also pretty similar. They are
different because each line has its own shape. On the other hand, they’re all
arranged in the same distinctive way, they all belong to you and they are all
responsible for making you the person you are.
Every one of us in this world acts as this distinctive line who shapes this planet’s distinctive fingerprint. We are all different, yet we are all very similar.

Enactus arranges these fine lines in a harmonic manner to create the
distinctive fingerprint of our planet. More than 69,000 students from more than
1,710 different universities, located in 36 different countries are working to make
this world a better place for everyone through the entrepreneurial action. They
ignore any differences and they work as teams to create community development
projects, that put people’s own ingenuity and talents for the sake of improving
their livelihoods. They are different, yet they are similar. They work
wholeheartedly, and their passion keeps them moving forward.
Their dream is to be the change, not to merely make a change. Enactus doesn’t
tell people how to act, but instead it allows them to be the action. People aren’t
guided by leaders, because they are the leaders themselves.

Every year, thousands of students from different countries, different cultures
and different lifestyles meet at Enactus World Cup. Regardless of their
differences, they are all going there full of hope and eagerness to present the
work and actions that they took to make better lives for more than 1,177,000
people, who are impacted directly by Enactus’ projects.
Could you imagine those students having a life changing experience and creating
their own impact within themselves and in everyone they know, including their
families, their friends and their relatives!

Enactus has been connecting these fine distinctive lines of different people
since the 70s. At first, it started as SIFE, which stands for Students In Free
Enterprise who were trying to eliminate the huge gap between academic studies
and labor market. It had modest beginnings in Texas, where the National
Leadership Institute’s Robert Davis, a Texas attorney, founded it in 1975.
Each fall, university teams were invited to attend leadership-training programs
where they would learn the principles of free enterprise and develop leadership
skills. They were challenged to go back to their campuses and conduct free
enterprise outreach projects in their communities. In the spring, the teams were
invited to present the outcome of their efforts to judges at regional competitions
who evaluated how well they taught others the working knowledge of the free enterprise system.

During the late 1990’s, SIFE expanded internationally into Albania, Brazil, South
Korea, Ukraine, Russia and Uzbekistan, and in the year 2000, SIFE saw its most
significant growth with new program operations opening in Australia, Belarus,
Botswana, Ghana, Malaysia, Nigeria, Philippines, South Africa and United
Kingdom.

In July 2001, SIFE held its inaugural SIFE World Cup competition in London,
England, where National Champion SIFE Teams from 17 countries vied for the
title of SIFE World Cup Champion.

“When you grow up you tend to get told that the world is the way it is and your
life is just to live your life inside the world. Try not to bash into the walls too
much. Try to have a nice family life, have fun, save a little money. That’s a very
limited life. Life can be much broader once you discover one simple fact:
Everything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no
smarter than you. And you can change it, you can influence it. Once you learn
that, you’ll never be the same again.”
- Steve Jobs

In 2012 SIFE was changed to Enactus to truly reflect the spirit of
entrepreneurship and action, which is our purpose. Each and every Enactus
student has been changed from someone who all what he thinks is about the
college, assignments, quizzes, and exams to someone who truly thinks like an
entrepreneur. Enactus tutored them to the way of Marketing, Fundraising,
Budgeting, and Management. Every one in Enactus doesn’t see the world from
the same perspective as before. Thus, they all became entrepreneurs who are
not only able to meet their career goals or change their societies, but alter the
whole world.

What makes thousands of young students ignore everything they might face and
set it aside? It’s the entrepreneurial spirit. It’s what makes everyone of us see the
opportunity in every problem, see the chance in every failure, see the light in the
complete darkness. Human progress depends on our ability to tap into the
entrepreneurial spirit that lives within each of us and channel the unique talents,
passions and ideas we each possess toward creating a positive change in the
world.

A Leader’s mindset and a heart full of passion, are all what you need to
make a change.

Social Entrepreneurship

 

Social Entrepreneurship

 ‘‘Objection!’’ this is the word that keeps echoing inside our minds starting from the moment we wake up till the moment we go back to sleep. It’s the fine line that separates an ordinary person from an entrepreneur. The latter chooses to face the objectionable circumstances and eradicate them in an effective action, while the other simply keeps repeating the same word in the following day. Entrepreneurship has traditionally been defined as the process of designing, launching and running a new business, which typically begins as a small business, such as a startup company, offering a product, process or service for sale or hire, and the people who do so are called ‘entrepreneurs’. People commonly confuse the broad term ‘’Entrepreneurship’’ with ‘’Social Entrepreneurship’’.

The two words, social and enterprise, might seem paradoxical to be put together. Entrepreneurs are generally linked to making profits for themselves and the shareholders, so they seem unlikely to be associated with social interests. Meanwhile, this is not entirely true. A social entrepreneur is defined as “someone who recognizes a social problem and uses entrepreneurial principles to organize, create, and manage a venture to make social changes. While both will have certain similarities between them, there are differences that make the social entrepreneurship unique from its bigger brother, commercial entrepreneurship. The first difference would be the aim, or the mission of both entrepreneurships. While traditional business entrepreneurships usually have the aim of creating profitable gains while maintaining a lower cost of production, social entrepreneurship aims to accomplish targets that are social and or environmental as well as financial. Therefore, we can say that the primary difference between social entrepreneurship and traditional business entrepreneurship is the purpose of setting up the enterprise and how they assess their success.

A social entrepreneur is someone who uses business principles to address social or environmental problems. Social entrepreneurs become experts on the problems they fight — whether those are local, regional, national, or global — and, as often as not, they’re visionaries.

Nowadays, we are facing challenges like never before. The world’s “to do” list is enormous and growing. For social entrepreneurs, that means take your pick — please! You can start small, focusing on a narrow, local issue, and work your way up to bigger and broader goals, building on your successes. The good news — and the bad news, of course — is that there is no shortage of problems around, waiting to be tackled.

Things needed to be done yesterday! You sense the urgency.

Is it that others just haven’t got around to it yet? Is there a lack of knowhow or available resources?

At this point, it doesn’t much matter. Somebody has to do something.

And you have a feeling that somebody is you.

International Women’s Day

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Today we are celebrating International Women’s Day and what is a better way to do this than sharing some of the world’s most renowned women success stories.

 Helen Keller, 1880–1968

An American social activist. At the age of 19 months, Helen became deaf and blind. Overcoming the frustration of losing both sight and hearing she campaigned tirelessly on behalf of deaf and blind people.
-“When we do the best we can, we never know what miracle is wrought in our life, or in the life of another.”

Coco Chanel, 1883–1971

A French fashion designer. One of the most innovative fashion designers, Coco Chanel was instrumental in defining feminine style and dress during the 20th Century. Her ideas were revolutionary; in particular she often took traditionally male clothes and redesigned them for the benefit of women

Tegla Loroupe, 1973–

A Kenyan athlete. Loroupe held the women’s marathon world record and won many prestigious marathons. Since retiring from running, she has devoted herself to various initiatives promoting peace, education and women’s rights. In her native Kenya, her Peace Race and Peace Foundation have been widely praised for helping to end tribal conflict.

Dalia Mogahed, 1974-

A researcher, author, adviser and a consultant who studies Muslim communities. Dalia Mogahed is an American scholar of Egyptian origin. She is also the director of research at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding at Washington, D.C, the president and CEO of Mogahed consulting, a Washington, D.C-based executive coaching and consulting firm specializing in Muslim Societies and the Middle East and she was selected as an adviser by the U.S president Barack Obama on the White House Office of faith-based and neighborhood partnerships.
-“Remember this: For all the ugliness in the world there is far more beauty. For all the cruelty there is far more kindness. And remember one more thing: Those who remind you of this simple fact, keep them close.”

Djamila Bouherid, 1935-

She was born to a middle-class family in colonial Algeria. When all the Algerian students repeated every morning “France is our mother”, Bouhired would stand up and scream “Algeria is our mother!”From this time, Bouhired was drawn to the revolutionary cause. Her brothers having already been involved with the underground nationalist struggle, Bouhired was quick to join and her profile would quickly rise in stature. During the revolution she worked as a liaison agent for the commander Saadi Yacef.

In June 1957, before a large planned demonstration, she was captured by the French and, she claims, tortured for information about that demonstration. She did not divulge any information under torture and reportedly repeated “Algeria is our mother” while being tortured.

Rosalind Franklin, 1920-1958

When people think of DNA they tend to think of just Watson and Crick, the two men credited with the discovery of the DNA molecule, and winners of the Nobel Prize. In fact it was Rosalind Franklin, another scientist, who laid much of the groundwork – with her famed ‘photograph 51’ capturing the molecule on film.

Maya Angelou, 1928-2014

Maya Angelou was an American poet and a civil rights activist. She published 7 autobiographies, 3 books of essays and several books of poetry. She was active in the civil rights movement and worked with Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X. With the publication of “I know why the caged bird sings”, she was respected as a spokesperson for black people and women and her works have been considered a defense of black culture.  Her books center on themes such as identity, racism, family and travel.
-“A wise woman wishes to be no one’s enemy; a wise woman refuses to be anyone’s victim.”

Zaha Hadid, 1950-2016

She was an Iraqi-born British architect. She was the first woman to receive the Pritzker Architecture Prize. She received the UK’s most prestigious architectural award, the Stirling Prize, in 2010 and 2011. In 2012, she was made a Dame by Elizabeth II for services to architecture, and in 2015 she became the first woman to be awarded the Royal Gold Medal from the Royal Institute of British Architects.
-“Yes, I’m a feminist, because I see all women as smart, gifted and tough” Zaha Hadid

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, 1938-

She is the 24th and current president of Liberia, is the first democratically-elected female head of state in Africa. Following her election Sirleaf announced the creation of a “national peace and reconciliation initiative” to address the country’s divisions and begin a national dialogue that would bring the country together. In 2016, she was elected as the chair of the Economic Community of West African States, making her the first woman to occupy this position. Sirleaf was awarded the Nobel peace prize in 2011 for her peace building work.
-“All girls know that they can be anything now. That transformation is to me one of the most satisfying things”

Lotfia ElNadi, 1907-2002

She was the first African Egyptian woman as well as the first Arab woman to earn a pilot’s license. ElNadi read an article about a flying school which had just opened in Cairo and determined that she would attend, despite her father’s objections.  ElNadi flew in the international race between Cairo and Alexandria. Flying at speeds averaging 100 miles per hour, she steered her single-engine plane to the finish-line before any of the other competitors. As she missed flying over one of the two tents located at midpoint of the course, which was required as part of the competition, ElNadi was not declared the winner.

Finally, that’s how much women have contributed to the world. Those women believed they could, so they did.

Volunteering

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Volunteering is generally considered a selfless activity where an individual or a group provides services freely for no financial gain and in the process benefit another person, group or organization.

The verb was first recorded in 1755. It was derived from the noun ‘Volunteer’, in late 16th century and meant at that time “One who offers himself for military service.” and it originated from the Middle French ‘Volontaire’ . In the non-military sense, the word was first recorded during the 1630s.

This term rapidly has changed over the time and has been spread widely until it became as we know it today. It crossed the lines of wars and made its way to each aspect of life. Over the past couple years, we rarely see someone who doesn’t volunteer in any kind of activities even if it’s inside the campus or outside with a sole purpose; to benefit the community in which someone resides. However, there are many kinds of volunteering more than what you know. Most popular and globally recognized volunteering activities for undergrads nowadays are Enactus, IEEE, TEDx and AEISEC.

So, how can you benefit from volunteering?
  • You expand your personal and professional networks
  • You learn new and transferable skills
  • It’s an opportunity for career exploration
  • You build a track record of work for a specific cause
  • Hiring managers value volunteerism
  • Brings fun and a sense of fulfillment to your life
Volunteering effect on recruiting and engaging

Did you know that today’s employees are increasingly entering the workforce with an expectation that volunteering will be a part of their professional careers?

PriceWaterhouseCoopers discovered that 88% of Millennials gravitated toward companies with pronounced Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programs, and 86% would consider leaving if their employer’s CSR no longer met their expectations.

And according to the 2011 Deloitte Volunteer IMPACT Survey, 61% of Millenials said a volunteer program would be a factor when choosing between two potential jobs with the same location, responsibilities, pay and benefits.

Deloitte found that over 50% of Millennial employees that volunteer are very loyal toward their company, proud to work there, satisfied with their employer, and likely to recommend their company to a friend.

Voulenteering effect on professional development

In a Skills-Based Volunteerism (SBV) program where volunteers use their professional skills in a different capacity to benefit a nonprofit or other organization — the gains that a business’ employees make are two-fold. First, they’ll hone their day-to-day skills: employees who participate in SBV programs are 142% more likely to report job-related skills gains than traditional volunteers, according to a True Impact report.

Secondly, exposure to a new environment — and new challenges — will allow employees to break out of their ‘comfort zone’ and develop other skills away from the office. According to Deloitte, 91% of Fortune 500 HR managers said, “Volunteering knowledge and expertise to a non-profit can be an effective way to cultivate critical business and leadership skills,” such as project management, communication, goal setting and evaluation.

Apart from developing their skills, SBV programs have the added benefit of being especially good at creating more engaged and fulfilled employees. According to True Impact, volunteers in SBV programs are 47% more likely to report higher satisfaction from their involvement than traditional volunteers, which means that in developing their employees’ skills, businesses are more likely to retain their talent as well.

Conclusion

This is the era of volunteering. It became largely associated with our lives that every household has a member or more who has done or still doing volunteer work. All for the sake of our community, and in the process of giving, you gain. You gain knowledge, skills, exposure to different environments and fulfillment. So volunteer and make a small impact because we all know that the ocean is made up of tiny drops of water.

What makes a business successful?

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What makes a business successful? Why do some companies make millions of dollars, while others go bankrupt? While conditions differ and scenarios are almost impossible to compare, there is always one constant thing; every successful business creates something of value.

The world is full of opportunities to make lives of other people better in some way, and your job as a businessperson is to identify things that people do not have enough of, and then find a way to provide them.

The value you create can take on one of several different forms, but the purpose is always the same. To make someone else’s life a little bit better. Without value creation, a business cannot exist, you cannot transact with others unless you have something valuable to trade.

But, what is value?
In its simplest definition, valuable things are the things that people are willing to give up a particular sum of money in order to acquire them. It does not matter how much time you spend improving your product or how much it costs you. Products are only as worth as customers are willing to pay for them.

So, if you are thinking about starting your own business, you’ve got to ask yourself one question; would anybody buy my product?

Demiana

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Social, environmental and economical, these are the three axes that all of our projects are based on; and Demiana’s project is no different. As tourism is Egypt’s best way to make money, it was a no brainer to start this project. Economically, it brings in a substantial amount of money; socially, it connects people and spreads our culture through the world and it does not hurt the environment during the process. However, who is Demiana?

17 centuries ago, a Roman empress built a monastery over the tombs of a 40-murdered nun. They were killed for standing for what they believe in. Buried in a holly place where the holly family passed during their journey in Egypt. Demiana was one of those nuns who sacrificed their lives in order to protect their religion.

Located in Bilqas, this monastery is one of the oldest and most spiritual monastery in the whole world. With rare Versions of the bible and authentic belongings of the earlier Christians in Egypt, a place stands to tell history. Every year in May, there is an enormous fair that attracts people from all around Egypt to visit the monastery, buy souvenirs and refresh their souls from all the hardships of life.

Seeing this masterpiece of art being neglected and almost forgotten, we had to take an action. We started this project in order to protect our identity, share our history and putting this place on the map as one of best places in the world. Demiana’s monastery offers us a sanctuary of beauty in an ugly world, and we should never let go of that.

 

Enactus mansoura then and now

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Mansoura, Year 2009.
Poverty, pollution, people striving to afford their meals, graduates with no idea how to start their careers and college students who have got nothing but hope.

That’s when three college students decided to take action, to make a difference and be the change. They had passion for business and the desire to make this community a better place for us all.
Three students meeting everyday on a bench in the university campus with limited resources but with great ambition, considering all the options they have and taking into account their business knowledge; they decided that the best way to solve this community’s problems is through an entrepreneurial based approach. Going by the old proverb “give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” ,they went from the idea of giving people money to teaching them how to make it on their own. They even went a step further; they aimed to revolutionize the whole fishing industry! They wanted to create a model where not only fishermen will benefit from the fishing industry; but all the members of this community. And that’s how it all started.

Known as SIFE at the time, Enactus Mansoura University was launched on November, 2009. It was launched with one goal, to help people in need in order to make this a better community for us all. With projects bound by our treble bottom line; we help the community through economical, social and environmental perspectives. With this as our guideline, we search for opportunities; we take action and we make this world a better place. Now, years have passed and those three students have graduated. Projects have ended and others began; but we still work with the same passion, in the same manner, for the same reason. We are being the change we try to see in this world. And no matter how hard it gets, we will always find a way.

That’s who we were then, that’s who we are now and that’s who we will always be. A group of college students with an ambition for more than just passing our exams. Because where others see challenge, we see opportunity. while others fear failure, we fear never having tried. when others dwell on what is not, we dwell on what can be, what should be; what must be. And then we take action.

 

MiniDollars Hall of Fame

Hall of fame

“The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.” Steve Jobs

High school students are famous for causing trouble, missing classes and maddening their parents. However, they are not so popular for being entrepreneurs! And as the only thing that differentiates people from each other is their impact on the world; MiniDollars students are not just like any other high school students.

It all started with Juice box, a team with a small idea to lower the consumption of harmful soft drinks and replace it with healthy juice. They were just high school students, but they were able to transform their idea into a profitable project through a perfect business plan.

Then there were Ethanol and Environmania, they were both working for the same purpose; saving the environment. The champions of the years 2012 and 2013 respectively, proved that business is not just about profit, and businessmen are not just a bunch of soulless humans all what they work for in life is money! Their projects were as successful as they were Eco-friendly, and that is why we place them among the stars of MiniDollars.

Last year, Zoo team tried to change Mansoura zoo into a tourist attraction site, they were so close for being the champions if it were not for The Box team! The Box’s plan was to turn empty freight containers into homes for the homeless! Their project was an absolute stunner that made the cup their own.

These are just few members of the MiniDollars family. A family that proves that age is not counted by years, it is counted by how many lives you have changed! They maybe young, inexperienced and maybe you will call them dreamers. Nevertheless, their impact on the society was monumental. They left their print wherever they went, and that is what makes them special. For that they a deserved a place in the MiniDollars’ Hall of Fame!

The truth about starting your own business

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Entrepreneurs are made, not born. And like anything else, they are often influenced by society’s beliefs. Some beliefs are encouraging, some are discouraging, and some of them are just plain wrong.

Which one of these was holding you back?

Myth #1: It is all about the idea.

Actually, it is less about your idea and more about your customers. Your idea may be great, but if you are not able to recognize and adapt to new trends and meet the demands of your customers, you may not be in business for very long. Introducing an old idea to a new market is as profitable as creating a new product out of thin air!

Myth #2: Wait for the right moment.

Wrong. The only timing that will ever be right is now. You will never have the perfect resources and you can never figure it all out without taking the first step. And as corny as it sounds, you as an entrepreneur have to take the moment and make it perfect.

Microsoft was founded in 1975, near the end of a recession. And later re-incorporated in 1981, just as the recession of the 1980s kicked off. These were two horrible times to start a business, but that has not stopped Microsoft’s success.

Myth #3: You need millions of pounds to start

Of course, money is an essential factor but you can always start with less than you have in mind. You can start on a smaller scale testing your product and as money starts to come, you can always expand.

Myth #4: You get to do more of what you love.

If you think, you will have more free time then you are wrong. Of course, you can have a more flexible schedule, but your job as entrepreneur is not just doing one task, it is running a whole business.

Myth #5: Built it and they will come.

If it were that easy, everybody would have done it! Just because a founder builds, it does not mean customers will line up to buy it. Customers will always buy the best product. Success in business is really about building the best distribution and marketing for the product. This is where so many business owners forget to focus.

By: Abdelrahman ElEraky