The goal of NAFAS is to initiate and manage sports programmes that give street children and young people at risk a place to breathe, hence their name, which means “breath” in Arabic. By creating a positive medium through sports, participants can receive help tailored to their unique needs with social reintegration as the ultimate goal.
Founded in 2012, NAFAS originally focused on helping homeless children who were living on the street, but over the years they have expanded their outreach programme to different areas of Cairo, and now offer support to youth and men who may need it. While priority is given to those with more desperate needs, they have a “don’t turn anyone away” policy.
According to an Associated Press report, nearly half of all Egyptians live under or just above the poverty line. More than 15 million Egyptians live on less than $1 a day, and the figure is steadily increasing (AP, 2011).