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There Is One Thing That Empowers Egyptian Girls like Nothing Else. Care To Guess?

Girls don’t just wanna have fun in Egypt. More and more organizations created by and for women crystallize that claim. But basketball? How will playing a game help them overcome traditional roles and be taken seriously?

It’s simple, Hayam Essam says: “Sport breaks down gender stereotypes and challenges traditional scripts for women and girls. It increases their visible active presence in the public sphere and changes the way girls think about themselves.”

With this idea as a starting point, Hayam founded Girl Power, an initiative that offers basketball programs to underprivileged girls, including health and nutritional education. It’s not just the physical exercise: by setting clear goals, “they learn achievement oriented behaviors that expand their aspirations” to become leaders in the future.

Founded in 2013, the organization runs on a volunteer steam of 8 and partners with Egyptian well-established NGOs in Konayessa and Mansheyet Naser. “Nothing can replace sports in their power to overcome divisions in the Middle East,” Hayam says.

For more information: Follow Girl Power’s Facebook Page.

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Valentina Primo

Journalist, globetrotter, and determined idealist. Since Valentina left her home country of Argentina, she has searched for ways to build bridges between cultures and foster dialogue. Her previous work in international organizations in Italy and Germany fed her passion for the world of development, while her 8-year journalistic experience in Argentina and Egypt increased her curiosity for everything that challenges the stereotype. She holds a BA in Journalism and a Masters in Peace Studies with a specialization in Human Rights.

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