Last Wednesday marked a significant milestone with the official launch of the highly-anticipated Egypt Urban Campaign. The launch unfolded in a large virtual session, bringing together 60 participants representing diverse organizations based in Egypt. This campaign aims to engage UN-Habitat partners and citizens in Egypt in discussions on sustainable urbanization leading up to the 12th session of the World Urban Forum, scheduled to take place in Cairo from November 4 to 8, 2024.
The Egypt Urban Campaign is designed as an inclusive dialogue centered around six essential pillars: People, Cultural and Natural Heritage, Resilience, Inclusion, Well-being, and Housing. It will feature a series of in-person and virtual events, including webinars, urban talks, lectures, exhibitions, Urban Thinkers Campus sessions, competitions, sports events, and tours. All partners will have the opportunity to contribute to key topics, share transformative ideas, and foster interdisciplinary dialogue.
The launch event opened with a warm welcome from Rania Hedeya, the Director of the UN-Habitat Egypt Office. Her introductory remarks set the tone for the day, underscoring the importance of collaborative efforts in achieving sustainable urban development goals. Amr Lashin, representing the UN-Habitat Egypt Office, then provided a comprehensive introduction to the Egypt Urban Campaign, emphasizing its global significance and illustrating the interconnected nature of urban challenges and solutions. Christine Auclair, Coordinator of the World Urban Campaign, outlined the campaign's mission, vision, and objectives. She presented a draft program of events submitted by EUC partners over the last month, emphasizing the collective commitment to creating resilient and inclusive urban spaces.
The highlight of the event was the Engagement Stage, where representatives from various sectors showcased their commitment to the Egypt Urban Campaign:
Government Partners: Key government officials outlined their commitment to policy reforms and collaborative initiatives focused on sustainable urban development, expressing a strong interest in playing a key role in the EUC.
Private Sector Partners: Leaders from prominent private sector entities unveiled potential events and initiatives aligning with the campaign's pillars, addressing housing, urban services, and mobility needs.
Civil Society Partners: Diverse voices from civil society shared grassroots initiatives and community-focused contributions addressing waste management, mobility, inclusion, and resilience.
Universities, Research, Academia: Top academic institutions, research organizations, and networks emphasized their role in providing knowledge, research, and innovative solutions to address urban challenges.
UN Organizations and Other Stakeholders: The event concluded with representatives from UN organizations and other stakeholders reaffirming their commitment to collaborative efforts.
As the launch event concluded, a sense of commitment and collaboration prevailed. The efforts witnessed during the launch showcased Egypt's dedication to sustainable urban development, marking the beginning of a transformative journey for Cairo and Egypt as they progress towards the 12th edition of the World Urban Forum.