By Tamara Pupic
Al Ahli Holding Group’s CSR division has awarded three student teams for their innovative social entrepreneurship projects at its latest Global Youth Forum
The fourth edition of the Global Youth Forum (GYF) has ended with a successful launch of three new social enterprises by students.
GYF 2015, organised by the CSR division of Al Ahli Holding Group (AAHG) and Sony Mobile, in partnership with Dubai SME and Zabeel Ladies Club, awarded the two winners of the international competition, Hemitna and Tabadol projects, with a joint cash prize of $20,000 covered by AAHG.
On the national level, the judging panel awarded the idea of Leila Zerehzadeh a fresh graduate architect, to bridge the gap between unexperienced fresh graduates or students with corporations that are in need of solution ideas.
Heba Al Ayouby, a Jordanian student from HULT University in Dubai who presented Hemitna project that aims to provide educational opportunities to Jordanian youth, said: “Corporations many times are looking for innovative solutions for new projects and pay enormous amounts of money to consultancy companies.
“This platform will allow companies to source those ideas and solutions from students’ creative, out of the box minds, and students will have the chance to get real professional experience.”
The two-day event, under the theme Social Entrepreneurship and Business Ethics, provided 120 students with the opportunity to discover, identify and grow their entrepreneurial skills, create global networks and discuss significant issues concerning their future and the pressing social problems.
On the first day of the event, the attendees benefited from hearing first-hand experience on how social entrepreneurship changed the lives of the founders during a panel discussion moderated by Sahar Abdulla, senior manager of Business StartUp and Development at Dubai SME.
One of the panelists, Sahar Wahbeh, founder of Dumyé – Dolls with a Purpose, advised students that “the journey of an entrepreneur is not easy and demands long working hours and the only resource you have is your ideas, vision and determination.
“Chasing money is fruitless. You have to think about establishing reputation first.”
As the exclusive governmental partner of the event, Dubai SME presented many success stories of social enterprises in the region and facts and figures on entrepreneurship and SMEs in Dubai and the UAE.
CSR Al Ahli Holding Group is a philanthropic arm of Al Ahli Holding Group that was founded in 2008 with an aim to develop Arab youth, build their skills, and widen their horizons and exposure.