Celebrating thirteen years of partnership

2009 marked the beginning of a thirteen-year partnership between Alfanar and SODIC which has seen our joint investment in fourteen social enterprises.

SODIC's significant and continued support has helped directly impact over 30,000 lives in sectors ranging from women's employment in textile production to preschool education and micro-loans to widows.

The Alfanar-SODIC partnership goes beyond that of a simple funding relationship. Together, we work to identify social investments, set strategies with them, build their capacities, and develop their business plans. This has led to a portfolio of curated venture philanthropy investments across Egypt and marks an important shift in how philanthropy is practised in Egypt.

Speaking at Alfanar's 2019 London reception, SODIC's Senior Public Relations Manager Nadine Okasha captured the essence of our partnership, saying:

Through our partnership with Alfanar SODIC has grown to deeply believe in venture philanthropy. Over the years we have developed a real conviction that is it the only way forward, especially in countries like Egypt where the potential is so vast and the resources cannot keep up. Operating from a business mindset it is exciting for us to work with social enterprises that are geared towards achieving profit, growing revenue streams and eventually recovering their costs, allowing us to move on to new projects. Alfanar's unwavering commitment to changing the way we all conceive of helping those in need makes it easy to get behind them.
Supporting Educate Me's Growth from After-School Programme to Sustainable Social Enterprise
One of our flagship investments has been with Educate Me. Started by Yasmin Helal in 2010, this began as a small, informal, after-school support programme. By any measure, this was a venture full of risk. SODIC and Alfanar however assessed positively the strength of the backable chief executive, her team and her model.

Over the past years we have given Educate Me the platform and the financial security needed to formalise its community preschool and school in Talbeya now reaching 283 children, to hire and train teachers from the community, and to launch a unique educator training programme now shifting the quality of education delivered across 283 public schools in 7 governorates and reaching over 70,000 children.

Today, our support, combined with Educate Me's tenacious drive and spirit, has transformed this social enterprise into a multi-million Egyptian pound organisation that advises the government, impacts thousands of children and teachers per year, and is working towards its financial sustainability.



Students at Educate Me's Community School in Cairo

Backing the Next Generation of Education Entrepreneurs in Egypt

In 2022 SODIC backed Alfanar's inaugural Education Seed Cycle in Egypt, through which we provided five high-potential education-focused social enterprises (Man Ahyaha, Makouk, SAWA Smart Classes, Future Zone and Mahrati) with four months of intensive training and management support aimed at strengthening their foundations and pathways to sustainable impact. Two will move on to business planning.

Whether innovating online vocational training, using smart classes to reinforce the education of disadvantaged children, running high-quality community schools, developing innovative educational games in Arabic or helping young people bridge their learning years with future work aspirations, the social enterprises who took part in Alfanar’s inaugural Egypt Education Seed Cycle 2022 were relentless in their commitment to improving educational opportunities for children across Egypt.

Speaking at the Education Seed Cycle 2022 graduation ceremony, SODIC's Managing Director Magued El Sherif said:

“We are extremely proud to celebrate the five graduating education social enterprises for their remarkable performance. Investing in education and empowering younger generations have always been at the forefront of our corporate citizenship agenda.” 


Sawa Smart classes 

From top left clockwise: SODIC's Managing Director Magued El Sherif, Alfanar's 2022 Education Seed Cycle Graduation Ceremony, a Makouk Educator, a Sawa Smart Classes Student

Today, SODIC is working with Alfanar not just to grow more promising social enterprises, but to build the foundations for a social investment movement that can affect education and opportunity for a growing number of vulnerable women, children and youth in Egypt.

This goes beyond simple corporate social responsibility, to a true investment in our society and the problems affecting it. Alfanar has provided SODIC with the tools and channels to make a lasting change in Egypt.

Together, we look forward to another 13 years of creating an even greater sustainable impact.

* In 2022 SODIC's support to Alfanar is backing our current cohort of education social enterprises: Man Ahyaha, Makouk, SAWA Smart Classes, Future Zone and Mahrati. We are grateful for both SODIC's financial and strategic support.