15 Feb 2016
Cairo, Egypt
Organic Food and Agriculture

Nawaya, an organization founded by a group of young  Egyptians, is working on a plan to ensure a transition to sustainable agricultural practices in Egypt. The nascent initiative organizes participatory programmes designed for the techniques of organic farming. Nawaya also helps farmers and their families develop their skills and market their own products, creating a direct link with consumers.

Born following the Arab Spring, Nawaya develops participatory programmes in the Egyptian rural community with the aim of introducing sustainable agricultural practices. In Arabic, the term ” nawaya ” is a pun meaning both “seed” and “intent”, two key words that sum up the ambitions of this NGO: sow today the seeds of a rural future.

Nawaya is currently working with about fifteen families from the countryside to help in their transition to sustainable practices. Activities take place a the Fagnoon Art School, a creative center located in Cairo. That allows farmers to test new techniques directly on land plots.

Inspired by permaculture – a philosophy that advocates the reconciliation between human activities and natural ecosystems – the workshop operates primarily as an experimental space. It tests different techniques to reduce water consumption and recycle waste or compost, to improve soil quality.

This initiative is trying to shift minds towards sustainability | The Switchers

To help farmers generate new income, Nawaya also launched a livestock project of native fowls, Fayoumi. While giving visibility to the products of small-scale producers, Nawaya also creates a network of consumers sensible to their initiative.

We act as a catalyst for transitioning small-scale food-producing communities towards sustainability. Nawaya
This initiative is trying to shift minds towards sustainability | The Switchers

Nawaya has also set up a community kitchen on the premises of the Fagnoon Art School, and they involve the farmers’ wives. They share their traditional knowledge in educational sessions, while Nawaya sells their products through the brand Baladini, which was launched in 2014. This initiative strengthens the link with consumers and provides new economic opportunities for women from rural areas.

This initiative is trying to shift minds towards sustainability | The Switchers
Nawaya Organic farming
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