Mr. Sameh Seif Ghali

Mr. Sameh Seif Ghali - Egypt

Environmental Development and Sustainability - 2013

Sameh Seif Ghali worked in various leadership positions in Egypt’s largest national grassroots organizations before establishing his nonprofit organization, "Together Association for Development and Environment (TA) ".While studying Ecological Environmental Agriculture in the Netherlands, he became fascinated by the different ways in which technology could be used to solve Egypt’s most pressing environmental and health problems, therefore founding TA to reform the lives of rural villages and developing a community-based model to improve water quality, sanitation, and public health in rural areas with low cost sewage systems. His new sewage plants are significantly cheaper than government planned sewage systems and serve isolated villages that formerly lacked salubrious living conditions. 

TA actively engages the community in the design and installation of the system involving house wives, unemployed youth and other members of the local population who are, in turn, trained to construct and maintain this system. This approach not only guarantees that the system meets the actual needs of each village, but it also generates a sense of ownership and confidence among villagers, motivating them to undertake other collective projects.

Under the leadership of Ghali, TA is now pioneering and installing a bio-gas unit in one of the villages, connecting the sewage system with power generation. The models are smart, low cost and are effective for the community-based sewage systems. Five different models have already been developed and implemented in two Bani¬ Suief villages, covering 1,000 households and benefiting 10,000 people. 47 million Egyptians live in rural areas and 10.8 million of the rural population lives in poverty with only 52% of them having access to improved sanitation facilities.

Through TA, Ghali also created a network of grass root organizations in order to advocate for a wider adoption of this approach in other villages and to lobby to policymakers. Ghali’s aim is to spread this system throughout Egypt and established a new Egyptian Sanitation Network. In the next 5 years, TA aims to reach 17 new villages, expand the model beyond Egypt and into the Middle East, in addition to shift public policies so that government sanitation model can massively reach rural areas. TA´s strategy is a combination of growing the organization growth while creating "smart networks"

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