The Women Pioneers Challenge was posted on the Hivos-supported Zoomaal crowdfunding platform as a follow-up of the 2013 challenge. After the 15 April deadline for submitting projects, a careful selection of the 25 projects submitted went live on 23 April. As of the moment of publication of this article, $70.521 had been raised.
Hivos and Zoomaal started the competition in recognition of the important role that women play in the Arab world. The competition offers women in the region the opportunity to help realise their dream projects. Hivos has committed $20.000 in matched funding for this competition.
We asked the driving force behind Zoomaal, Abdallah Absi, for his first reaction to the amount that was raised in only a few days’ time. “The speed of raising more than $60,000 in less than 24 hours proves that the Arab world is rich in both creative initiatives in need of funding and individuals who are eager to support regional initiatives. Zoomaal’s strategic partnership with Hivos in matching funds created the right incentives for individuals to actively support regional initiatives,” he told us.
The criteria for this competition was that women’s projects needed to have a positive impact on society and use an innovative approach in their outreach. Women throughout the Arab world applied. The projects that are online come from Lebanon, Morocco, Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Algeria, Tunisia and United Arab Emirates.
You can find out more about these projects and support your favourite one at: http://www.zoomaal.com/browse/challenge.