By Tamara Pupic
Silatech’s Narwi is available to young Arab entrepreneurs in six countries, and has been supported by Qatar Charity
A new online ‘micro-giving’ platform for financing young Arab entrepreneurs has launched in Qatar to fund micro enterprises of the Arab world’s unemployed youth.
Narwi.com was founded by two Doha-based organisations, Qatar Charity and Silatech, which aim to leverage the power of crowdfunding to help provide financing to young Arabs wishing to start their own very small enterprises.
Silatech is a social initiative headquartered in Qatar, designed to promote entrepreneurship in the region, while Qatar Charity is an NGO, established in 1992 to support Qatari society and communities in need abroad.
Dr Tarik M Yousef, CEO of Silatetch, said of Narwi: “It will allow visitors to the site to directly and securely contribute toward financing the young Arab entrepreneur of their choice in countries including Palestine, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq, Yemen and Somalia.
“Funds on Narwi are given as revolving donations, so that when the entrepreneur repays the original loan, the donation moves on to support others as well.“
The agreement he signed jointly with Yousef bin Ahmad Al-Kuwari, CEO of Qatar Charity, follows the 2013 signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the two groups to cooperate in technology, fund-raising and technical assistance.
Through the agreement Qatar Charity will provide $ 500,000 of direct funding for Narwi, as well as outreach assistance in marketing the portal.
For its part, Silatech will offer technical assistance to Qatar Charity, enabling it to showcase selected youth development projects of Qatar Charity outside of Qatar for crowdfunding opportunities.
Al Kuwari said: "Through this key partnership between Silatech and Qatar Charity, we're taking advantage of technology, innovative programme design features and crowdfunding that through Narwi shall make it easier to support young Arab entrepreneurs through Shariah-compliant lending.”