Mother’s Day is around the corner and there’s so much propaganda going around. If you feel like it’s consumerism gone mad but you still want to treat your mom because- let’s face it any excuse to “spoil the 7aggah” :) Here is our take on how to spoil her + do a little good + not buy into solely consumerist nonsense- basically: NM’s top 20 social picks for Mother's’ Day
The choice is yours: Buy something for her, Do something with her or treat her to a cool meal or trip :)
Places to buy from:
Thaat and Studio Embaba:
We’re Obviously kind of biased; incubated social enterprise Thaat works to empower local artisans.Primarily working women to improve productivity, design, quality and variety of existing local handicrafts, and reviving and preserving lost traditions. Thaat also encourages networking among the local handicrafts community, and supports up-and-coming, talented designers.
GebRaa is a newly incubated social enterprise working to economically empower rural artisan communities in Egypt and aide in developing their communities while simultaneously protecting the crafts and heritage of Egypt: focusing on mother of pearl inlay and hand-embroidered products.
GebRaa will also be at the Galleria40 Mother’s day Bazaar on Friday the 18th of March.
Markaz who have showrooms both in Maadi and Zamalek carry beautiful handcrafted egyptian products from multiple producers and brands including El Nafeza etc. Unlike other showrooms who carry a variety of different qualities Markaz specialise in premium quality pieces. Check out their Mother’s Day event at their Zamalek Showroom on the 19th of March.
Up-fuse is a Cairo-based startup company that promotes a sustainable and eco-conscious lifestyle. Here’s what they say of themselves: “We design and produce bags with a design edge, made out of upcycled plastic bags and other environmentally friendly and locally produced materials. Every product is handmade with unique colors and patterns, carrying stories that connect our customers to our producers. In cooperation with local NGOs in Cairo we value social responsibility and transparency in production and working conditions while promoting the skills and talents of local artisans. Our mission is to create sustainable fashion that supports local communities while raising awareness and decreasing waste; turning problems into opportunities.”
Tumani: Tumani, a project that started out as a summer activity in one of the underprivileged quarters in Giza helps young school girls discover and develop their handcrafting skills to generate income beside their education and keep them in the school system.
Tumani will be at the Zamalek Grotto Garden Mother’s Day Bazaar on saturday the 19th of March.
Jozee Boutique is an online and offline boutique carrying “ethnic” handmade fashion from the Middle East and Asia carrying several local producers’ products that are working on growing crafts market in Egypt.
Part of AWTAD or the Association for Women’s Total Advancement and Development NGO “The Anamel Masrya program seeks to contribute to the economic development of local artisans and to the preservation of Egypt's unique cultural heritage through the creation of a new generation of entrepreneurial artisans ready to take their talent to the next level. The idea is to coordinate our three hubs: the Producer Hub (containing talented producers who do not have access to a wide market); the Design Hub (containing talented designers who cannot produce); and the Marketing Hub (containing both on-the-ground and online sales).”
Creative Egypt aims at promoting Egypt’s heritage and achieving sustainable development for Egyptian artisans through a partnership with the government’s IMC or the Industry Modernisation Center. Creative Egypt’s first branch at Omar Effendi Store, Ahmed Orabi Street – El Mohandseen and “comes with distinct designs and high quality products for ethnic and handicrafts products that reflect the history of Egypt with contemporary cultural spirit.” They carry everything from textiles and clothing to furniture.
Check them out at their Mother’s day event: 18th of March 2016 2pm to 9pm.
Yadaweya is Egypt's first online fair-trade marketplace, connecting local artisans with customers across Egypt and the wider world. Yadaweya was founded by a team of young Egyptian social entrepreneurs passionate about the diverse handicrafts and handmade treasures of Egyptian artisans. Our online platform also serves as a bank of knowledge for those interested in discovering Egypt and its cultural heritage.
Gezazy: beautiful upcycled glass bottles, everything from light fixtures to tea sets and they’ve diversified to other upcycled materials, check it out! From waste to beautiful works of art!
Fair Trade Egypt
These guys really don’t need any introduction Fair Trade Egypt have been around since 1998 and going strong!
“Fair trade empower local communities; offering disadvantaged Egyptian artisans marketing and support, as well as developmental services. Fair Trade Egypt promotes the application of the Fair Trade principles promoting culturally, socially and environmentally responsible business ideals.”
Newly incubated social enterprise Allaga aims to spread an Egyptian-international fashion identity; fusing international fashion trends and the creations of Egyptian craftsmen and artisans. Allaga works to promote the concept of teamwork and the value created by various minds working together.
Things to do with her:
Sign her up and taker her to a 3hr Nafas adult cooking class (Tuesday 22nd evening class, 7pm/ Thursday 24th morning class, 11am) there’s also a parent-child class (Tuesday 22nd 3pm)
The Nafas School of Agroculinary Arts and Sciences is a cooking school that is working on reimagining the kitchen and reeducating the public about food and where their food comes from and looking at how they interact with “each other and the planet”. Working with cooks from preschool to adults Nafas uses cooking to teach children about ecology, science, maths, geography, gardening and more!
Help her with her spring cleaning and cleaning out the closet you can donate the stuff to Souq El Kher who sell it *for cheap* to people in need and use the money to pay for school fees for children who need it as well as other NGOs.
A day out at Fagnoun: pottery, arts and fields: If your mom is anything like fagnoun himself -the orginal lost boy- she hasn’t grown out of playing around with clay. Fagnoun offered both young children and the abou seer community the chance to positively exchange with arts and the public, his labour is all locally sourced and the surrounding community and their women and children are often engaged in their many events and activities
Places to take her out to lunch/ Dinner
This hidden gem in Maadi is the greatest place for lunch with their own deli meats and incredible local food market they are reshaping the way people interact with their food with a focus on good, clean, local, fair, foods and friendly knowledgeable staff. They also have a great garden!
Eish w. Malh’s Mother’s Day Brunch & Jazz 18th March or Saturday the 19th of March
Helping grow an alternative approach to dining Eish w. Malh are revitalising the Downtown social scene offering a rare type of dining and entertainment from music, films, communal dinners and hosting Slowfood events introducing their patrons to new parts of the Egyptian modern cultural scene.
Baldini’s Mother’s Day Pizza Party at Nūn Center.
Baladini is a project started through incubated social enterprise Nawaya. “Baladini is a community kitchen working with rural women. Baladini has worked with women from the abo seer rural community to become artisanal food producers through the creation of high-quality, nutritious food. All of their food is also sourced from small-scale farmers, their profits reinvested in educational programs.”
Trips to treat her to:
Kom El Dikka Agrilodge in Tunis Village in Fayyoum is provides a great family or friends’ retreat, you’ll have to book for later of course but a couple of days of easy going warm weather with activities like fruit picking and birdwatching will make for a great bonding experience. If you’re very flush the neighboring Lazib spa resort offers many types of therapy!
Habiba Organic Farm:
Got an active hippie mom? Treat her to a few days at Habiba Farm and Lodge. You can enjoy Nuweiba from a completely new angle learning about desert agriculture interacting with Habiba’s incredible diverse and native communities and enjoying the red sea!
We could go on of course, but we’ll leave some for next year ;) Happy Mother’s Day everyone, and keep it meaningful!