Human Concern International (HCI) held its 33rd Annual Charity Dinner on Friday, September 27th with a theme of hope interwoven throughout the evening.
This year's keynote speaker was Dr. Norman Cook, a former director with the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) who retired in 2006 but has continued to work in the field in the Middle East and Central Asia.
The Yemeni journalist and human rights activist Tawakkol Karman charmed several audiences during a visit to Ottawa on November 21 and 22 while touring across Canada.
Before landing in the nation's capital, the Nobel Peace Prize laureate had been in Edmonton, where she received an honourary doctorate of Laws from the University of Alberta. There, she also participated in the Festival of Ideas.
Lively dance performances by a First Nations group and a Lebanese trio were among the highlights of Human Concern International's 32nd Annual Dinner.
Although the volume for the show was a little louder than some people would have liked, the event was enjoyed by most of those in attendance. HCI Events and Media Coordinator Mahmuda Khan says she received overwhelmingly positive feedback from many of the over 360 guests at the banquet. The majority were pleased with the opportunity to hear about new HCI initiatives from speakers at the event.
University students and recent graduates of Egyptian heritage successfully teamed up with local community organizations and individuals last month to raise over sixty thousand dollars for micro financing and education projects in Egypt.
Heba Eid, one of the July 28 fundraising dinner's energetic organizers, wrote in an email interview that the team of young people was originally just hoping to be able to raise forty thousand dollars to kick start an ambitious program that would help finance 25 projects in a Cairo slum.