Program - Jusoor
Jusoor’s 2nd Annual Global Conference
Addressing Syria’s Current Realities:
Education, Employment, and Civil Society
October 19, 2013, London
Jusoor website: http://www.jusoor-sy.org/
Jusoor Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/jusoor.syria
Jusoor Twitter handle: @JusoorSY
Table of Contents
Thank You to the Many Supporters of Jusoor
Conference Master of Ceremonies / Keynote Speakers
Panel Descriptions and Speaker Bios
Education: Giving our Children a Chance
Economy: Getting Syrians Back to Work
9 - 10
Civil Society: Nation Building and Civic Engagement
11 - 12
13 - 14
Jusoor’s Refugee Education Programme
Jusoor’s Membership Profile
Donors to Jusoor’s Scholarship Fund
Jusoor Leadership Team
19 - 20
Thank you for joining us today at Jusoor’s Second Annual Global Conference. It is wonderful to be establishing a tradition in which Syrians
meet every year in a different city to discuss how we can collectively make a difference for our beloved country. The enthusiasm with which
Syrians from around the world have embraced Jusoor’s mission is deeply inspiring, our network has now grown to nearly 25,000 individuals
(from 4,000 one year ago); over 500 people volunteered in Jusoor’s programmes over the past year. Let’s continue to build on this
momentum today, with a conference full of enriching discussions and new ideas.
Our goal for today’s event is that each individual leaves with:
More hope for the future;
A rejuvenated energy and inspiration for working collaboratively; and
A deeper understanding of the path we need to take to rebuild our country.
The teamwork that went into making our 2nd Annual Conference and Charity Dinner possible was among the strongest we have ever
witnessed. Our conference committee, all volunteers, has been meeting every week for the past six months, sharing ideas and connections.
Their dedication to the conference and to Syria is just extraordinary. Committee members included: Amjad Baiazy, Amr Al Khateeb, Anas
Darkaoui, Anas Nader, Dia Aldean Abulzahab, Diane Daoud, Dima Almekdad, Fadi Albatal, Husam Helmi, Maya Zayat, Rashad Kattan, and
Wissam Shahin. What an inspiring team!
We would also like to thank Neville McBain, CEO of the Saïd Foundation, and Catherine Roe, Saïd Foundation Trustee, for their truly
invaluable support and guidance. Their partnership and belief in Jusoor made today possible. In addition, we would like to thank Khaled
Samawi and Ayyam Gallery for everything they have done to help us raise funds to support Syrian education. Finally, we would like to thank
Kareem Sakka, our most ardent supporter, who has opened so many doors for Jusoor across each of our programmes and believed in us from
the very start.
We are looking forward to a very inspiring conference and Charity Dinner.
Thank you to each of you for joining ustoday and for your commitment to Syria.
Syrians Forward Together.
Jusoor Leadership Team
Thank you to the many supporters of Jusoor
The Jusoor Leadership Team has been truly amazed by the outpouring of support for the organization. Whenever we present Jusoor, we walk
away with countless new volunteers who want to get involved in the cause. From designers, to video producers, to website developers and
programmers to translation, almost everything Jusoor has done to date has been on a voluntary basis.
Thank you in particular to the individuals below. We would not have been able to build Jusoor without your support.
Hani Jesri, Director of our Refugee Education Programme in Lebanon. Hani’s unparalleled project management skills, his deep passion and
commitment to educating our Syrian children, and his strategic thinking and vision has been extraordinary to watch in action. Thank you Hani for
allowing us to touch the lives of so many children. You inspire us every day.
Amine el-Daouk, President of Al-Makassed Association, who so generously lent us a school for nine months and has been such a strong supporter
of the programme. Mohammad Gawdat who donated 20 computers to our refugee education programme in Lebanon and who has been an
incredibly fervent supporter of the programme.
Yasmeen Mahayni, who interned with Jusoor during this past summer. Yasmeen was so committed to the vision of Jusoor that she volunteered with
us over the summer months, overseeing our website and communication and several strategic projects for Jusoor. Thank you Yasmeen!
The 50 or so volunteers who have played a role in building our refugee education programme in Lebanon. These individuals have traveled from
around the world, paying their own expenses and giving up vacation time to bring hope and a smile to Syrian children and to help safeguard their
education. Special thanks to the volunteers who spent more than a month in the center and helped shape the direction: Ahmad Sakkal, Ali
Habbabeh, Anita Marie Glenny, Azhar Siddiqui, Dania Kelani, Eyas Kelani, Jina Touchan, Luna Tello, Maged Abdul Samad, Mahmoud Khalil,
Martin Petersen, Massa Baali, Mervat Atassi, Nadia Chatti , Petter Carlsson Söderstrand, Rasha Saba, and Sara Almoubayed.
Aziza Osman who has been invaluable in developing and leading the Career Development Programme and in lending a helping hand to Jusoor’s
Fadi Albatal who developed the vision and oversaw the effort to build Jusoor Connect, our new online searchable member database. Fadi has
been one of the most active and committed Jusoor members and an inspiration to work with. Thank you also to Zeina Shahla and Jemma Wakim
who volunteered countless hours to develop and design the database.
Dana Theodory, our designer, who is constantly donating her time and her creativity to develop beautiful materials to help build a strong brand
Mohammad Sabbagh who has overseen the development and creative design of our website.
Our partners: Our friends at Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT), Institute for International Education (IIE) and EducationUSA that have shown
an incredible commitment to Syria and its youth. We thank you sincerely for what you have each done for Syria:
IIT: Jerry Doyle and Megan Mozina
IIE: Daniela Kaisth
EducationUSA: Monica Ibrahim
Finally, our most ardent supporters who have believed in Jusoor and our mission from the very first day and made our programmes possible:
Kareem Sakka and Dania Debs, Sulaiman Naim, Marieke Bosman and the Asfari Foundation, Ghaleb and Suha Mahayni, Rania Kouzabri, Omar
Sawaf, Rafia Koudmani, Zena Takkieddine, and Fadi Yaziji.
8:00 - 9:00 am
9:00 - 9:30 am
Conference Welcome and Introduction to Jusoor
Lara Setrakian, Master of Ceremonies
Jusoor Leadership Team
9:30 - 10:15 am
Mr Wafic Rida Saïd, Chairman, Saïd Foundation
10:15 - 10:45 am
10:45 - 11:45am
Education Panel: Giving our Children a Chance
12:00 - 1:00 pm
Economy Panel: Getting Syrians Back to Work
1:00 - 2:00 pm
2:00 - 3:00 pm
Civil Society Panel: Nation Building and Civic Engagement
3:15 - 4:45 pm
Emergency Funding for Syrian University Students in the UK
Scaling Jusoor’s refugee education programme
Preserving Syrian Businesses
Scaling Jusoor’s Career Development Programme
Building Entrepreneurship Among Syrian Refugees
4:45 - 5:00 pm
Conference Master of Ceremonies
Founder, Executive Editor at News Deeply
Lara Setrakian is the Co-Founder and Executive Editor of Syria Deeply. She has spent more than five years as a
foreign correspondent, covering the Middle East for television, radio, and digital platforms, as well as reporting
for ABC News, Bloomberg Television, the International Herald Tribune, the Business Insider, and Monocle
Magazine. She has since focused on the fusion of news and technology; her first platform, Syria Deeply, launched
in December 2012 to wide acclaim. TIME Magazine dubbed Syria Deeply “The Future of News,” while Fast
Company said it “outsmarts the news business, redefines crisis coverage.” Fast Company went on to name Setrakian #20 on its list of the 100
Most Creative People in Business. Lara is currently a Fellow of Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism, serving at its Tow-Knight
Center for Digital Journalism. She was as an inaugural fellow with the Peter Jennings Programme at the National Constitution Center and
named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum. Prior to joining ABC News, Lara worked as a business analyst with McKinsey
& Company, focusing on finance and corporate strategy. Lara graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University and is a term member of
the Council on Foreign Relations.
Wafic Rida Saïd
Chairman, Saïd Foundation
Wafic Saïd is a businessman, entrepreneur and philanthropist, the founder and Chairman of the Saïd Foundation,
and the founding benefactor of the Saïd Business School at Oxford University. He was born in Damascus where
his father founded Syria’s first university in 1923 and served as Minister for Higher Education during the late 1920s
Wafic Saïd started his banking career in 1963 at UBS in Geneva. Following a visit to Saudi Arabia in 1969 he started a company specialising in
turnkey construction projects and his companies played a crucial role in building airports, desalination plants, housing and hospitals and other
large Government projects which helped propel the Kingdom into the 21st century. In 1987 he started Saïd Holdings Limited, an investment
company with assets in Europe, North America and the Far East and, in 1995, he went on to co-found Sagitta Asset Management Limited,
an international asset management business.
In 1982 Wafic and Rosemary Saïd founded the Karim Rida Saïd Foundation, now the Saïd Foundation. The Foundation supports talented young
people from Syria, Palestine, Lebanon and Jordan with scholarships; it helped create a world class business school at Oxford University which
is developing a new generation of business leaders and entrepreneurs; and it supports children in need. Since 2011 the Foundation has been
helping to provide emergency shelter, health and education for Syrian refugees and internally displaced.
Giving our Children a Chance - Addressing Syria’s Education Crisis through Non-Traditional Solutions
An overwhelming number of children in Syria have had their education disrupted. Others have fled the country and are experiencing
difficulties in enrolling and staying in the local school system. This panel explores alternative education methods for Syrian students both
inside and outside Syria. How can safe access to education be provided for children in conflict zones? What can be done to enable children
to continuously and easily complete their education in a way that meets international standards and attains full accreditation?
In addition, the panel highlights the importance of vocational training and how to encourage vocational education to supplement traditional
education. This, in turn, enables Syrians to cope with the conflict and accelerate the recovery. How can a viable vocational training programme
be built at the national level? How can Syrian refugees be engaged through vocational training programmes to be self-reliant?
Head of Project, Development Progress, ODI
Susan Nicolai is Head of ODI’s Development Progress, a project which aims to better understand what works in
development and why. As a flagship, and drawing on expertise across the institute, this research features a series
of case studies exploring how countries have advanced in specific areas such as health, education, environment,
political voice, employment, material well being, social cohesion and security. Further analysis takes this and
other evidence to delve more deeply into questions around measurement, political economy and financing of
development. Susan has previously worked with the UN SRSG on Children and Armed Conflict, Save the Children and UNESCO IIEP. Her
own policy work and research has focused on basic services – particularly education – as a foundation of development and in relation to peace
and security in crisis affected countries.
Regional Conflict & Child Protection Advisor, Mercy Corps
Alexandra Chen is a child protection and psychosocial specialist from Hong Kong working with refugees in
conflict and post-conflict zones. Alexandra has worked extensively with vulnerable populations throughout Africa
and the Middle East, most recently for UNICEF, UNESCO, UNRWA to advance education and peacebuilding
in humanitarian settings. She is currently serving the Syrian refugee community as Regional Conflict & Child
Protection Advisor to Mercy Corps’ child protection and psychosocial programmes funded by UNICEF in Jordan
and Lebanon. Prior, as International Ambassador for the Faculty for Israeli-Palestinian Peace, Alexandra designed
peace education curricula, facilitated trauma therapy workshops for youth, and trained UN frontline staff in conflict management. She has also
evaluated child development programmes for orphans in Ethiopia, mapped community-based protection mechanisms in Somalia, developed
citizenship education and peacebuilding curricula for Iraq, and researched the role of Islamic law in nation-building and constitutional reform
in Egypt. Alexandra holds a B.A. with Honors from Harvard College and an M.A from Harvard University in Jewish & Islamic Law, where
she was awarded the Harvard Foundation Insignia Award “for outstanding contributions to intercultural and race relations.” She speaks 10
languages, including fluency in Chinese, Arabic and French.
Education Management Consultant
Massa Mufti-Hamwi is currently a consultant in education management and development, engaged in educational
research and initiatives that address partnership between Formal and Non-Formal Education, Interactive and
Museum-based Learning, Citizenship Education and Life-long Learning. She was formerly the Chair of the
Steering Committee of MENIT, the GIZ funded initiative of Middle East Network for Innovative Teaching and
Learning. As a consultant to MASSAR Project, she provided continuous services and support to the development
of the exhibition design process. While working as a Teacher assistant in French at US universities, she developed her progressive teaching
methodology and worked on relating it to her studies on educational reform and leadership. Massa is certifiably trained in numerous fields,
including Project Management and Logframe, Public Speaking, and Leadership from Harvard Business School. She has attended ESCITE
conferences in Toulouse, Warsaw and the NAMES conference in Kuwait. Massa obtained her Masters Degree in French Literature from The
Catholic University of America, as well as, completed Ph.D. coursework in French Literature from the University of Maryland. In addition,
she has a Masters Degree in Education Policies and Leadership from The American University of Beirut.
CEO, Malala Fund
Shiza Shahid is the CEO of the Malala Fund, the organization set up by the young Pakistani activist shot by the
Taliban for her campaign for girls’ education. The fund supports education innovators and activists across the
world. Shahid has supported Malala’s work since 2009, when she mentored Malala and others in a summer retreat
in Pakistan to raise awareness about the Taliban’s attack on female education. Shahid has also been managing
Malala’s advocacy campaign over since October 2012.
Jusoor has partnered with Illinois Institute of Technology to create a scholarship programme for Syrian students. With the education these 35 Syrian students are receiving, they have
tremendous potential to become the future leaders of Syria.
Getting Syrians Back to Work - Restoring Dignity and Livelihood through Enterprise
A tremendous number of Syrians, including both those internally displaced and refugees, are facing economic hardship. Hunger, sickness
and homelessness are now widespread. Youth at their prime have had their lives stopped abruptly in their tracks. Human potential is being
wasted, and, even worse, the suffering is growing more extreme every day.
This panel seeks to explore practical solutions for the economic crisis the Syrian people are now enduring. How do we help Syrians who
remain in Syria sustain their local businesses? What can we do to help Syrians who have moved to new countries, from Lebanon to Greece,
establish micro enterprises? How can we help instill a culture of entrepreneurship among Syrian youth in order to keep the Syrian economy
CEO, Haykal Group
Abdulsalam Haykal is CEO of Haykal Group, with activities in print and online media; software, mobile, and
payment technology; and commercial representation. Haykal serves on the Board of Trustees of the American
University of Beirut, and of University of Kalamoon in Syria, and on the President’s Advisory Board of the EARTH
University in Costa Rica. In 2009, Haykal was named a “Young Global Leader” by the World Economic Forum. In
2010, he represented Syria at President Obama’s Entrepreneurship Summit. Haykal is the co-founder and president
of the Syrian Young Entrepreneurs Association, and helped start several other NGOs focusing on education and youth empowerment. In
2013, he took part in starting Syrian Entrepreneurs Worldwide, a virtual eco-system to help Syrian entrepreneurs relocate and start up in their
adopted home. He holds a BA in Political Science from the American University of Beirut and an MA in International Relations from SOAS/
University of London, and attended Harvard Kennedy School executive education.
Project Director, Labour Market Observatory at United Nations Development Programme
Kinan Bahnassi completed his education at Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts. He has worked
for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Syria as a Project Director to the “Labour Market
Observatory.” His career achievements have centered on various roles, managerial, research, and academic
university teaching. He has conducted and managed numerous national projects and research activities, addressing
issues pertaining to the labour market, entrepreneurship, decent employment, vocational training, and the
higher education sectors. He has also worked as a resource figure for the Summer School of Labour Economics at the International Labour
Organization (ILO). Bahnassi is strongly committed to community and society development issues; in addition, he actively participates in
the national and regional social and economic developmental plans and has had notable involvement in economic and social dialogues.
Dr. Usama Fayyad
Executive Chairman, Oasis500
Dr. Usama Fayyad is Executive Chairman of Oasis500, a regional early-stage fund and entrepreneurship initiative
based in Jordan and aiming to create an early-stage/angel stage investment base in the region along with funding
up to 500 start-ups in technology (ICT and interactive media focus).
Fayyad earned his Ph.D. in engineering from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor (1991), he also holds BSE’s in
both electrical and computer engineering (1984); MSE in computer science and engineering (1986); and M.Sc.
in mathematics (1989). He has published over 100 technical articles in the fields of data mining and Artificial Intelligence, a Fellow of the
AAAI (Association for Advancement of Artificial Intelligence) and a Fellow of the ACM (Association of Computing Machinery), has edited
two influential books o data mining. He launched and served as editor-in-chief of both the primary scientific journal in the data mining
field Data Mining, and Knowledge Discovery, and the primary newsletter in the technical community published by the ACM: SIGKDD
Explorations. He holds over 25 patents in Information Technology. More details on Usama’s background see his personal web site at: http://
Chairman, Syrian Economic Forum
Ayman Tabbaa is a founding member and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Syrian Economic Forum.
Mr. Tabbaa is a businessman based in Damascus, Syria, where he owns a property development company. Mr.
Tabbaa received his bachelor’s degree in business administration in the United States. Prior to owning his property
development company, he managed several finance and property development companies. He has spent time
living in the United States and Dubai.
Jusoor’s career mentorship programme pairs established Syrian professionals with Syrians searching for jobs.
Nation Building and Civic Engagement - Towards an Effective Civil Society in Syria
A well-developed strategy for empowering and institutionalizing the nascent Civil Society in Syria is critical to ensuring that Syria becomes
a well-functioning democratic state. Over the past two and a half years, Syria’s emerging civil society has managed to carry out massive
humanitarian efforts, filling many gaps left by the state and civil institutions, despite monumental challenges. However, the focus of the
Syrian Civil Society– whether inside Syria or around the world— needs to shift to supporting reconciliation and rebuilding of the Syrian social
fabric during a painful transitional phase in the short to medium term. Eventually, it needs to become a core player in state building.
The panel seeks to highlight real cases of effective civil society in Syria today as well as explore how we might support the rapid development
of civic engagement, especially in the context of the bleak social, economic and political realities in the country.
Director, Governance and Innovation Programme at Dubai School of Government
Fadi is the Director of the Governance and Innovation Programme, and Fellow, at the Dubai School of Government
(DSG); Fellow with the I+I Policy Research Centre, Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, National University of
Singapore (LKYSPP); and, a former Associate with the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard
Kennedy School (HKS). His areas of expertise include new models of governance and citizen engagement,
and their impact on social development, including ICT and reform, e-government, social media and citizen
participation in the Arab region. He has been involved in numerous projects with government and private sector entities in the Arab region,
as well as with international organizations, including the OECD, United Nations, WEF, World Bank and the European Commission. Prior to
joining DSG, he worked in The Executive Office, where he advised senior government leaders in Dubai. He also previously worked as an
editor of two pan-Arab publications. Fadi is a graduate from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), and the School
of Engineering, Aleppo University. He is the author of numerous publications in peer-reviewed publications and media, and co-author of
several proceedings and books, including the Arab Social Media Report series and the recently published “From Electronic Government to
Information Government” book in Arabic.
Co-Founder, Free Syrian Translators
Reem Al-Assil is the co-founder and manager of the Free Syrian Translators (FST), an independent media group
established in September 2011. Reem completed her master’s degree in Biotechnology and worked as a lecturer
in different universities in Syria. Reem is a member of the “Syrian Nonviolence Movement” (SNVM) and was the
head of its Media Department between March and September 2012. SNVM, an NGO founded in the beginning of
the Syrian popular uprising in 2011, is considered one of the most influential work-groups advocating civic activism
and nonviolent resistance as means of change in Syria. She is also a member of “Freedom Days” since the founding
of the group and a member of the Syrian National Council since October 2012.
Lina Sinjab, was born in Syria and has extensive experience in Journalism for tv and radio, she joined the BBC and
quickly became the BBC’s Syria Correspondent. Lina covered the Syrian uprising since the beginning in 2011 and
has written on the challenges facing journalist covering conflicts and reporting from the ground, she has been
transferred to London recently. Linagraduated from Damascus University, then completed her Master degree
from SOAS university in 2009 in International Politics. Lina has talked in several forums about her experience as a
journalist in Syria and the important role of civil society in the ongoing conflict in Syria.
Syrians working together to develop programmes to affect change for Syria’s future.
Each conference participant will have the opportunity to select one of these working sessions to participate in during the final 90 minutes of
the conference. The objectives of these sessions are twofold:
• To work collectively to develop strong project proposals
• To identify how participants can play a role in implementing these projects
Working Group 1:
Education: Emergency Funding for Syrian University Students in the UK
Working Session Facilitator: Christine Gilmore, Doctoral Candidate at University of Leeds
The civil war in Syria is threatening the financial security and well-being of hundreds of Syrian students enrolled in higher education institutes
(HEIs) in the UK. Having lost access to vital sources of funding from Syria, these students now face rising debts and, in some cases, expulsion
from their universities. This working group will discuss how to strengthen a proposed project underway to develop a coordinated response to
support Syrian students among the government, universities, and NGOs in the UK.
Working Group 2:
Education: Scaling Jusoor’s Refugee Education Programme
Working Session Facilitators: Amr Al Khateeb, PhD Student in Marketing at Henley Business School, University of Reading; Alexandra Chen:
Regional Conflict & Child Protection Advisor, Mercy Corps
Jusoor’s refugee education programme in Lebanon, which is providing basic education and uplifting activities for Syrian refugees, is now
reaching 150 children. The magic of the programme is that it has been run by volunteers from around the world who are eager to get involved.
Meanwhile, there are well over 300,000 Syrian school-aged refugees in Lebanon now, the vast majority of whom are not in education
programmes. This working group will look to address how Jusoor can dramatically expand the scope of its programme.
Working Group 3:
Jobs: Preserving Syrian Businesses
Working Session Facilitator: Iyad Alajdad, Head of Investment Banking at Generation Alfa
Due to current unrest, many Syrian businesses have been lost, disturbed or relocated. Together, Syrian businessmen and qualified workforce
escaped Syria to more stable countries. Although this forms a serious drain of knowledge and capital in the short term, it could also be an
opportunity to spare those resources and grow them away from the current unrest so they are ready to contribute and invest in Syria once it
settles and form an anchor economic power during the re-building phase.
This working group will address the idea of creating a fund and expertise house that is supported by various investors to co-invest with Syrian
businessmen who are building their operations outside Syria in a fashion similar to that of private equity funds besides providing them with the
necessary expertise, support and professional services. Also the group will discuss the main challenges in establishing such a project and how
to implement it in a manner that benefits the wider Syrian society.
Working Group 4:
Economy: Scaling Jusoor’s Career Development Programme
Working Session Facilitator: Aziza Osman, Career Development Programme Lead
The Career Development Programme was launched in 2012 to address the growing unemployment of Syrians fleeing the country. The
competitive job market makes it hard for Syrians to find employment outside of Syria. Through workshops and mentorship, Jusoor trains
Syrians on the fundamentals of choosing a career and competing in today’s job market.
Our mentorship programme targets Syrians seeking advice in a specific field by pairing them with experienced mentors who clarify the job
role, define the industry’s market and refer job opportunities.
This group will discuss the importance and urgency of mentoring Syrians and propose ways that encourage professionals to volunteer as
mentors and adopt mentorship as ongoing endeavor. In addition, we hope to be able to institutionalize the programme and invite more
companies to support employment efforts for young Syrian job seekers.
Working Group 5:
Economy: Building Entrepreneurship among Syrian Refugees
The Syrian crisis has displaced thousands of Syrian youth and forced them into refugee camps and cities around the MENA region. As they flee
repression, the Syrian population has been robbed of the opportunity to either maintain small businesses started before the crisis or pursue
new business ideas and opportunities. The Oasis500 business acceleration programme will help in training, mentoring, and funding qualified
Syrian entrepreneurs and support them in establishing ICT startups in an effort to offset the drain put on human capital in Syria and the Syrian
economy. This working group will address the necessity of creating sustainable businesses with growth potential that will be transferred back
to Syria in an effort to revive the economy and create employment opportunities. We aim to create locally operated companies that will have
a global impact in the ICT sector.
Jusoor, founded in June 2011, is focused on bringing together and engaging the global Syrian expatriate community in efforts that will help
Syria and its people realize their full potential. Jusoor is working to link the 20 million Syrians outside of Syria with the 20 million Syrians
inside Syria. Our programmes thus far have been primarily focused on providing scholarships and mentorship to youth in Syria by drawing on
the support of the global Syrian community around the world.
Jusoor believes that youth in Syria should have access to profoundly better opportunities in the years to come. In particular, we hope for a
nation that embraces democracy, respects human rights and rule of law and encourages free speech and the exchange of ideas. We hope for
a country that offers its people high standards of living, underpinned by a strong education system. And we hope for a country that promotes
opportunity, in which every young woman and man grows up with hope and dreams for the future and finds opportunities within the country’s
Jusoor is a non-political organization with strictly no ties to any political entity. Jusoor’s programmes do not differentiate according to political
views, ethnicity, religion or gender.
Jusoor has achieved several notable milestones since its establishment, including:
Membership: We now have nearly 25,000 individuals in our network from over 40 countries. Our membership ranges from
students inside Syria to Syrian professionals in North America, Europe and Asia to leaders of global institutions and global citizens
who are committed to our cause of bettering Syria’s future.
Scholarships: Jusoor has partnered with the Institute of International Education (IIE) and over 40 universities and counting around
the world to provide scholarships for Syrian students. Through this partnership, more than 150 students now have opportunities
to receive an education from some of the world’s leading universities. These bright, young Syrians will play a key role in shaping
an improved future for Syria.
Refugee Education Programme: We recently launched our first programme to support education among Syrian refugees. The
programme aims to lift the spirits of children we work with and ensure they receive the educational fundamentals they will need
to have any chance at succeeding in life. Through the programme, we are working with nearly 150 young Syrians ranging between
the ages of 6 and 12 years old, focusing on basic Arabic literacy for the youngest children, and English and math training for the
older ones in preparation to enter the Lebanese educational system. The programme will continue throughout the academic
year, hopefully expanding to new parts of Lebanon. The magic behind this programme is that it is run by volunteers who come
from around the world and touch the lives of these children with the love they bring and the innovative teaching approaches and
games they each develop.
Mentorship: Jusoor has been running an education mentorship programme and a career mentorship programme over the past
two years. These programmes match students and job seekers, most often inside Syria, with more established Syrians around the
world with similar educational background or expertise, who can provide advice and coaching. These programmes have provided
tremendous value to our mentees and a tremendous sense of satisfaction to our mentors.
Please email us at [email protected] If you would like to get involved in any of these programmes.
Jusoor’s Refugee Education Programme
Jusoor Membership Profile
Jusoor’s network has grown from 4,000 individuals around the world a year ago to over 25,000 today. Jusoor now has members in over 43
countries, connecting Syrians across the four corners of the world, from as far as Japan in Asia, all the way to the UK and Germany in Europe,
and to the United States and Canada in North America, and finally down to Latin America, Africa, and Australia. All with a common objective
to support Syrian causes.
The Ambassador Programme: Jusoor is appointing ambassadors in cities around the world to help spread the word about Jusoor in their city,
mobilize the expatriate community there by getting feedback from the Syrian community about the types of programmes they would like
to get involved in (within our focus), contributing to the various Jusoor projects, and building partnerships with the various institutions and
organizations in their area. Please contact us if you would like to serve as an ambassador in your city.
Donors to Jusoor’s Scholarship Fund
Ansari Family Foundation
Talal Sawaf and Family
Hossam Shobokshi and Family
Karim Sakka and Dania Debs
Associates (Up to $4,999)
Shadi Al Azzeh
Ali Al Khalaf
Assad Al Sarraj
Fouad and Lina Batah
Mounir Ben Silmane
Business Computer Applications
Cranbrook Rotary Club
Walid and Rasha Demashkieh
Nasser and Samia Jallad
Farid and Maha Jano
Patrons ($20,000 – $49,999)
Al Madad Foundation
Middle East Projects Development
West Asia Capital
Donors ($5,000 – $19,999)
Daughters for Life Foundation
Rabih Amine and Elie Majdalani
Pierre and Nawal Zayat
Rami and Maria Kaakaji
Mohd Saleh Kayyali
Ghaffar and Margaret Kazkaz
Muhye Dein Mansour
Marvin and Martha Mikeska
Sami and Dunia Mounayer
Frank & Irene Palmay
Omar and Sima Sawaf
Hoda Akhras Shalabi
Bashar and Hoda Succar
Riad and Rana Zein
Ammar Abd Rabbo
Jaber Al Azmeh
Marwan Kassab Bachi
Fayez & Haifa Takieddine
Jusoor Leadership Team
Leen Al Zaibak: Leen grew up in Toronto where she received her Honorary Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science
from Trinity College, University of Toronto, Canada. After working for the Ontario Attorney General for two years,
she pursued her post graduate studies and received her Masters degree in International Relations from the University
of Manchester in England. Following her graduation, Leen moved to Damascus for two years where she worked as
manager on a World Bank supported project at a Syrian NGO. Leen currently serves as a policy advisor to the Ontario
Minister of Children and Youth Services.
Iyad Duwaji:Founder and Chairman of West Asia Capital, and more recently setting up a new firm that aim to invest in
farm land in North America. Mr. Duwaji was the Chief Executive Officer of SHUAA Capital for 14 years where he led
its growth by 26 folds to become the largest investment bank in the UAE. In 2009 he also provided strategic advice to
the Investment Corporation of Dubai. Mr Duwaji lived and worked in the United States prior to moving to Dubai. In
2007 he was selected as one of the “Power 10: Most Influential Arabs” by Arab Business Magazine. He holds an M.B.A
from the University of Texas at Arlington and serve as a director of several companies. He is a passionate supporter of
community activities dedicated to education and self-help initiatives.
Dania Ismail: Dania currently works at MBC Group, the leading media network in MENA, as Strategy and Business
Development Manager for the Corporate Strategy Division. Dania graduated with an MA in Media and Communications
from Goldsmiths College, University of London in 2004 and before that completed her BA in Sociology and
Anthropology from the American University of Beirut.
Nouman Ismail: Nouman has eight years of experience in commercial banking working for the National Commercial
Bank in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. During that period, he was engaged in assessing IT strategies, evaluating technology
investments and executing projects. Nouman is an accredited project manager from the project management institute.
He obtained an MBA degree from IE Business School in Madrid, Spain in 2012 and has previously received a BA in
management information systems from King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in 2003.
Maya Malas: Maya has just completed a Master’s degree in Urban Development Planning at University College
London, and is a graduate of the University of Damascus where she earned her Bachelor’s Degree from the Faculty
of Architecture (summa cum laude). Trained as an Architect she has worked in Bahrain, Syria and the UAE and has
experience in several aspects of real-estate development ranging from design, construction to project management. In
addition to her professional commitments Maya has always been engaged in philanthropic activities and is passionate
about progressive transformation in Syria through effective civic engagement.
Hasnaa Rabbat: Hasnaa was born and raised in Damascus and completed her undergraduate degree in Electrical
Engineeriing at the American University of Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates. She is currently doing her Masters in
Electrical Engineering (Communications and Signal Processing) at the University of Michigan.Hasnaa is a firm believer
in the role organizations can play in shaping the forthcoming generations into productive and educated youth capable of
enhancing the human condition wherever they go.
Fadi Salem: Fadi is the Director of the Governance and Innovation Programme at the Dubai School of Government
(DSG); and a former Associate with the Belfer Center, Harvard Kennedy School (HKS). His areas of expertise
include new models of governance, social media and citizen engagement; and e-government; including projects
with the OECD, UN and WEF. Prior to joining DSG, he worked in The Executive Office in Dubai. Fadi graduated
from the London School of Economics (LSE) and the School of Engineering, Aleppo University. He founded several
development projects and authored numerous publications including the Arab Social Media Report series. A frequent
speaker in international conferences, Fadi comments in the media regularly on governance, policy and current Arab affairs.
Rania Succar: Rania currently works for Google and previously worked for McKinsey & Company and Merrill Lynch.
While at McKinsey, Rania supported Middle Eastern governments on labor market and economic development policy.
She co-founded the Harvard Arab Alumni Association (HAAA) in 2001 and served as Co-President and President through
May 2008. Rania received an MBA from the Harvard Business School, an MPA in International Development from the
Harvard Kennedy School and an AB in economics from Harvard College. Rania currently lives in Chicago.
Rami Zayat: Rami was born and raised in Michigan, USA and is currently living in Kuwait working for DLA Piper. He
graduated from Michigan State University with a Bachelors of Science in Finance and continued his studies at the
Michigan State University College of Law. Rami is currently licensed to practice law in Michigan and Illinois. Rami
is a corporate lawyer with experience in private equity and mergers and acquisitions transactions, both locally and
cross-border and also has substantial experience in representing financial institutions on structuring Shari’a compliant
investment and finance products.
Since 1982, the Saïd Foundation has been investing in the talents of young people through postgraduate scholarship awards,
and also helping children held back by disadvantage or disability by providing them with opportunities to receive better quality
education and care. We aim to enable them all to achieve their potential, so they can create a brighter future for themselves
and for others. The priority countries of our programmes are Syria, Palestine, Lebanon, Jordan and the UK.
Syria Programme: we are currently providing emergency relief for people most in need in Syria and neighbouring countries,
as a result of the tragic conflict affecting the country. Since 2011 the Foundation has provided almost £3m in support of their
shelter, health and children’s education.
Saïd Business School: we are supporting the Saïd Business School to be the UK’s top business school, creating a new
generation of business leaders and entrepreneurs to lead innovation and change in business across the world.
Scholarships Programme: we give around 25 postgraduate scholarships each year to young people from the Middle East
at UK universities, to help them to become leaders of innovation and change in key sectors of development in their countries
Child Development Programme: we support organisations in the Middle East that enable young people held back by severe
disadvantages to benefit from care and learning and to live full and active lives.
The Foundation is a non-political and non-sectarian organisation. Our partners include non-governmental organisations, educational
institutions, other charities, government ministries and individuals.
9 October - 30 November 2013