"I decided to move to Egypt seven years ago to start my own company after having studied six years in Montreal, Canada.
But even after seven years, a full-time job and a company perfectly registered, Egypt still considers me as a tourist: I can't get a work permit or residency. So legally I am a tourist and I start believing so! I’m on a "permanent vacation", as film director Jim Jarmush would say.
After having lived many years in western countries, what I love most here is the warmth of the hearts. This country happily welcomes people like me who wish to act for better societies and contribute to a better world; and I am thankful for that.
People here want to know more about foreigners and how we live here; Once a TV channel willing to shoot a documentary to show that foreigners struggle to cross streets in Egypt, asked me to film myself crossing busy streets. After my fourth attempt, I nearly got ran over because the drivers were looking at the camera and the journalist!
I really do like this country. I co-founded an Egyptian startup pioneering the Clickfunding. We launched a new campaign to promote social cohesion between migrants and Egyptians. “It's a Match*" was a big success. We received tens of thousands of clicks to support the distribution of coupons to migrants and Egyptians. I'm proud that a single click can have such a significant impact and promote peace and dialogue.
To me, being a migrant means contributing to the country you live in. I just want migrants to be recognized for their true value, and to be seen as a strength not a threat. I have a job, I pay taxes, employ people, go to restaurants, buy local products... I'm a migrant."
This Clickfunding campaign provided 1,000 coupons to 1,000 persons. Half of them are migrants, and the other half are members of the welcoming host community. But before they can cash their coupons, they needed to meet their counterparts (either a migrant or a member of the welcoming community), get to know them and take a selfie together.