About the Winners

First Place

£3,660: Ms Shatha al-Azza and Mr Salah el-Sadi

Hydroponic rooftop garden

Shatha al-Azza’s hydroponic rooftop garden is a community-based solution to problems at the intersection of mental and physical health, food security, education, clean water, and (the often overlooked) nature connection. Built in the UN-run Aida refugee camp, the garden is designed not only to provide fresh organic vegetables, but also as a community venue for training young people in innovative urban farming techniques, and teaching residents about nutrition, sustainable farming, and food banks. The grant and mentorship provided will be enough to purchase essential raw materials for the garden and provide mentorship to build upon the already impressive local knowledge. Over 100 people will be directly served with fresh food, produce, and training in hydroponic agriculture and solar energy production. The long-term benefits of hydroponic technology in the region are outstanding, and the demand is surely there. Part of the funding will be directed towards teaching residents of Aida refugee camp and (at least one refugee camp in Gaza) how to build more hydroponic rooftop gardens in their own homes.

See updates on the hydroponic rooftop garden project.

Get in touch with the project winner at: [email protected]

Learn more about the hydroponic rooftop garden project

Follow the project on the hydroponic rooftop garden Facebook page

Blue Filter

Saleh el-Sadi’s ‘Blue Filter’ is an environmentally friendly filtration system, its genius being outdone only by its simplicity. The filter removes harmful pollutants from water making it suitable for irrigation, and can be used up to 15 times without failing. The chemical by-products can be recycled and used as fertilizers, making it sustainable in the long term. As well as funding the delivery of training workshops for local farmers, the grant awarded is a significant contribution towards the initial costs of raw materials, system installation and essential chemical testing devices. Supporting this project is to support the livelihoods and health of famers and their families, across the Gaza Strip. Part of the funding will go to teach farmers across Palestine how to employ the ‘blue filter’ system to remove harmful pollutants from water.

See updates on the Blue Filter project.

Get in touch with the project winner at: [email protected]

Second Place

£2,000: Mr Hadi al-Thib

Hadi is a young Syrian talent with a determination to destigmatise discussions around mental health in young people in the ‘Middle East’. Drawing on his own experiences, Hadi has identified key topic areas including self-care, stress, anxiety, and trauma. Through high quality video content, Hadi will unpack these issues in a truthful yet sensitive manner, beginning with a 10-episode series. He will produce this content Arabic, something which is not done enough, with a view to establishing his own media company. The grant and mentorship afforded to him will be used improve his camera quality, and help him learn professional editing skills, script writing, and how to publicise his videos. This will help him to spread this vital message in a competitive digital space.

See updates on the Blue Filter project.

Get in touch with the project winner (Mr Hadi al-Thib) at: [email protected]

Third Place

£2,500: Tebfact

Tebfact is a leading telemedicine project in Gaza. It provides online affordable medical consultations to patients. Our project funding will help to cover the costs of licensing and technical infrastructure, both of which are essential for expanding the project within Palestine and beyond. Tebfact will also provide *free medical services* for all refugees in the ‘Middle East’ who cannot pay for it. Drawing on a valuable pool of mentors, Tebfact will be able to overcome logistical issues that have stunted its growth thus far. In particular, the Refugee Entrepreneurial Fund is proud to connect Tebfact with a network of similar individuals and organisations in the ‘Middle East’, especially MedX [a group of Syrian medical students in Turkey]. Part of the funding will go towards an online summer camp to train refugee medical students/graduates on medical skills. We hope that the members of both teams will learn from one another, reflect on their journeys, and cooperate to improve the health systems in their respective countries.

See updates on the Tebfact project.

Get in touch with Tebfact co-founder: [email protected]

Follow the project on the Tebfact Facebook page.

Runners-Up Projects

Our Hearts with You (OHWY)

Our Hearts with You (OHWY) is a team of Syrian doctors operating since 2019 in four governorates (Damascus, Rif Dimashq, Homs, and Aleppo), and their team includes more than 250 highly qualified healthcare professionals and over 50 talented volunteers. Their volunteers work in various fields, including content writing, web programming, graphic design, transportation, public relations, research, social media, and others. The free healthcare services they have been providing since 2019 include (but not limited to ) medical and pharmacy consultations, psychotherapy and counselling, surgical operations, dental services, awareness campaigns, and the provision of prescription medicines. We will provide the OHWY team with mentorship fund that support their research unit to teach 30 of their members scientific research methods and then help in the follow up with them to conduct medical studies research and publish it. The fund will also support building a research team capable of training and assisting other interested physicians and students, to form a network of qualified and experienced Syrian researchers, especially in the medical field, and to integrate them with students who have benefited from previous training.

See updates on the Our Hearts with You project.

Get in touch with OHWY through Dr Jawdat Ataya: [email protected]

Follow the project on the OHWY Foundation Facebook page


MedX is a fairly-new team of Arabic-speaking medical students in Turkey. They support all Arabic speakers in Turkey (including refugees in the first place), with health awareness sessions, and integrate them in the Turkish medical system. One project they are working on is translating the Turkish health system into Arabic, benefitting all Arab refugees in the country. We will support MedX with mentorship and connect them with another health project based in Palestine (Tebfact) to learn from one another. As part of the support provided, the team will conduct more awareness sessions, prepare and publish several Arabic brochures on health-related topics, provide online and offline Arabic translation of the health system in Turkey, and other-health related awareness activities.

See updates on the MedX project.

Get in touch with MedX team: [email protected]

Learn more about the MedX project.

Follow the project on the MedX Facebook page

Follow the project on the MedX YouTube channel.