Thu, 07 Sep 2023 - 10:42 GMT
Thu, 07 Sep 2023 - 10:42 GMT
CAIRO - 7 September 2023: The Egyptian Ministry of State for Immigration and Egyptian Expatriates' Affairs recently welcomed Noria Sanz, the Regional Director of UNESCO's office in Cairo and the Arab States, to explore new horizons of collaboration between the two entities.
The meeting was graced with the presence of Saber Suleiman, Assistant Minister for Institutional Development and overseer of the Minister's office, and Salma Saqr, Assistant Minister for International Cooperation.
Bridging Cultural Gaps and Bolstering Egyptian Identity
Minister of Immigration Soha Gendi emphasized the significance of merging cultural perspectives while addressing issues related to migration. She stated that the Ministry has initiated several programs targeting the preservation and promotion of the national identity among Egyptian expatriates.
"With approximately 14 million Egyptians living abroad, integrated into diverse communities, it's imperative to cater to various age groups and their distinct needs," said Gendi. These initiatives aim to reinforce the connection between overseas Egyptians and their homeland, both in identity and culture.
Revitalizing Connections with the Younger Generation
Gendi also shed light on the ministry's endeavors to engage with the second and third generations of Egyptians abroad. By organizing visits and camps, and answering a plethora of questions from young individuals, the Ministry aims to acquaint them with their motherland and the concepts of Egypt's national security.
Camps specially curated for children aged 9 to 16 years from the fifth generation are also part of this initiative. "All of these efforts are geared towards binding these young souls to their homeland," Gendi noted.
Reconnecting with the Roots: The "Speak Arabic - Return to Roots" Initiative
The Minister revealed the launch of the new phase of the "Speak Arabic - Return to Roots" initiative. The project now includes students from international schools as its target group.
Additionally, an educational and recreational camp has been organized to familiarize them with Arab and Egyptian customs and traditions, thereby solidifying their bond with their motherland.
As Egypt continues to nurture its ties with its diaspora, collaborations like these with global organizations like UNESCO will play a pivotal role in preserving the rich cultural heritage and identity of Egyptians worldwide.
In the latest series of initiatives to connect with its vast diaspora, Egypt's Minister for Immigration and Egyptian Expatriates' Affairs, Soha Gendi, highlighted her participation in the third and fourth editions of the "Logos" conference.
This conference saw the participation of about 500 young Egyptians from abroad and featured notable meetings with Mustafa Madbouly, the Prime Minister, in the city of El Alamein. Also present at the event was Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria and Patriarch of the See of St. Mark, reinforcing the view of these youths as the future leaders and ambassadors of Egypt worldwide.
They hold the significant responsibility of clarifying the true developments taking place in Egypt to their peers in their respective countries of residence.
Efforts towards Constructive Dialogue
Moreover, the ministry's commitment to fostering dialogue with young Egyptians abroad was evident through the establishment of the Immigration Ministry's Center for Dialogue. The center aims to create channels of discussion between third and fourth-generation Egyptians abroad, as well as those studying overseas.
The objective is to tie them closer to the Egyptian state and harness their energy, skills, and academic experiences in the ongoing developmental processes, making them essential stakeholders.
Celebrating Multiculturalism: The "Nostos - Reviving Roots" Initiative
Minister Gendi also mentioned efforts under the presidential initiative "Nostos - Reviving Roots." This initiative celebrates foreign communities in Egypt, like the Greek, Armenian, and Italian communities, among others, that have a rich history of coexistence within Egyptian society.
Highlighting this, Gendi referred to her recent visit to Cyprus to attend the International Expatriates Conference, where she met several Cypriots. In addition, during her visit to California, the Minister engaged with members of the Armenian community of Egyptian descent.
Such endeavors under the initiative underscore the deep ties between the peoples of nations that have lived in Egypt and the welcoming Egyptian society. The bond remains strong, with Egypt holding a special place in their hearts.
UNESCO's Stance on Preserving Egyptian Identity Abroad
On her part, Sanz expressed her delight in meeting the Immigration Minister, affirming UNESCO's keenness to support the efforts of the ministry.
Especially pertinent are the initiatives focusing on preserving the Egyptian identity, culture, and the Arabic language among Egyptians abroad and the newer generations, amidst their integration into various foreign societies.