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Egypt – New Horizons

By Ben Cohen | 21 Feb 2019

Tearfund is to cease working in Egypt. It's a good news story for a number of reasons.

Tearfund says goodbye to Egypt, but leaves a continuing legacy.

Tearfund is due to end its 25-year presence in Egypt from the end of March. However the inspirational projects that it has helped to found and shape will continue.


We started working there in 1994. In partnership with Egyptian churches and Christian groups, we have been able to achieve a huge amount throughout cities, slums and rural areas. 

Partners in hope
Here are a few of the remarkable projects we’ve helped to birth in recent years with our Egyptian partners:

• Enabling African and Syrian refugees to to access health, nutrition and job-creation services. 
• Allowing young people to benefit from lending schemes, which empower them to escape poverty. 
• Advocacy work, which has allowed men and women with HIV to access services such as basic healthcare. 
• Supporting adult literacy work and encouraging girls to complete their primary school education and pursue further learning with a mentor.  

‘Before, I would get onto the wrong bus because I couldn’t read the sign. Now I know which bus to take,’
Noreen*, student of literacy course with EpiscoCare.

Noreen* is just one of over 100,000 men and women who have benefitted from these projects. However after 25 years, we’ve decided that the time was right to bring our involvement in this work to an end.

Living Legacy
‘We are committed to following Jesus wherever the need is greatest,’ says Sarah Newnham, Tearfund’s Head of Eurasia and North Africa. ‘We believe that economically speaking, Egypt has made great strides, and now has far less extreme poverty. That’s just one of the reasons we felt that the time was right to move on.

‘The church partners we have been working with are more than able to continue this work without our direct input. We’ve been working for five years with them, preparing for this and I believe they are more than ready.

Child benefitting from the educational work of a Tearfund partner in Egypt in 2008.

Child benefitting from the educational work of a Tearfund partner in Egypt in 2008.

‘However we will stay in touch with these amazing organisations. We want to encourage them as they seek to do more and more to transform their regions and their nation.

‘This is a positive sign: countries don’t have to stay where they are in terms of poverty. Things can and do change for the better.’

PLEASE PRAY

Pray for the churches and organisations who will be continuing this work in the months and years to come: 
• Refuge Egypt as they work with African and Syrian refugees. 
• The Council for Services and Development allowing young people to benefit from lending schemes. 
• Think and Do supporting the most vulnerable in the community by providing  vocational training, microloans and medical support. 
• Freedom Ministries enabling marginalised members of society with HIV and drug related problems to access services such as basic healthcare. 
• EpiscoCare encouraging girls to continue their schooling through mentoring.

* name changed to protect identity

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Photo of Ben Cohen

Written by Ben Cohen