Na’amal Agency Launches with Triumph: Meet Our Refugee Pioneers

Na'amal
5 min readFeb 7, 2024

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In a historic moment that embodies resilience, innovation, and empowerment, Na’amal Agency proudly announces the official launch of its operations. This significant milestone not only marks the completion of the inaugural project but also underscores Na’amal’s unwavering dedication to a hands-on approach, ensuring that remote work reaches displaced talent. The agency, committed to bridging the gap between skilled refugee talent and global business needs, aims to be a beacon of hope for displaced individuals seeking meaningful professional opportunities.

Project Structure and Partnership:

EqualReach, an impact sourcing hub, stands as a key collaborator, playing a pivotal role in securing remote project-based work from clients. This collaborative partnership unfolds with precision — EqualReach procured projects and matches them with trusted, vetted teams like Na’amal, and Na’amal strategically matches these projects to suitably trained talents within its Kenya and Ethiopia cohorts and, as project volume increases, MITReact Alumni. These cohorts, integral parts of the Digital Livelihoods in Ethiopia Programme and the Workforce Readiness for the Digital Economy Programme in Kenya, receive dedicated support from Na’amal’s technical team leads, ensuring a harmonious and efficient approach to project delivery.

Official Launch of Na’amal Agency:

The launch of Na’amal Agency not only signifies the agency’s commitment to a hands-on approach but also marks a new era for remote work solutions. With a vision to reach displaced talent, Na’amal Agency emerges as a transformative force, providing meaningful opportunities for professional growth and empowerment.

The official Na’amal Agency logo

Mission and Training Programmes:

Na’amal’s mission revolves around providing meaningful remote work opportunities for refugee talents. Collaborations with esteemed organizations like Digital Opportunity Trust, Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, MITReact and ILO PROSPECTS ensure comprehensive training for the agency’s talent. This training equips individuals not only with the necessary technical skills but also with the adaptability and resilience required for the dynamic nature of remote work.

The First Project:

The first project undertaken by Na’amal’s talent was no small feat — designing and implementing a digital system to facilitate accessibility assessments for businesses in the UK. The system allows businesses to request and receive assessments of their physical locations, aiding them in enhancing accessibility for disabled individuals. This ambitious project involved the development of a website, an algorithmic location-specific triaging system, and a full-stack data management system.

The Dev team for Na’amal Agency’s first project with one of Na’amal’s Technical Project Leads. From left to right: Susan Achiech - Full Stack Developer, Abdi Ambari -Technical Project Lead, Jerry Ekuwam - Full Stack Developer, Yonatan Aschew - Full Stack Developer

Susan Achiech’s Inspirational Journey:

Susan Achiech, Full-Stack Web Developer

Susan Achiech, a determined South Sudanese woman who spent her formative years in the Kakuma refugee camp, has demonstrated remarkable resilience in her pursuit of education and personal development. With a background in finance and primary education, Susan sought to expand her horizons by delving into ICT, enrolling in courses at Learning Lions ICT Campus. It was during this time that she recognized the potential of Na’amal to provide her with the essential soft skills required for freelancing. Susan reflects, “I saw Na’amal as an opportunity to enhance my skills and succeed in freelancing.”

Participating in a recent project, Susan gained invaluable insights into the significance of teamwork and effective communication. She reflects, “The project highlighted the importance of collaboration and honesty in dealings, essential elements for success.” Despite her inclination towards independent work, Susan embraced the collaborative nature of the project, realizing its transformative impact on her approach.

With aspirations to establish her own gaming company and contribute to the advancement of the gaming industry and women in STEM, Susan’s journey exemplifies extraordinary drive and a passion to give back to her community.

Jerry Ekuwam Lokoroi’s Transformative Journey:

Jerry Ekuwam Lokoroi, Full-Stack Web Developer

Jerry Ekuwam Lokoroi, a resilient graduate of Learning Lions from Turkana, Kenya, shared insights into his transformative journey before and during Na’amal. Growing up amid challenges, Jerry’s journey was marked by determination and perseverance. Learning Lions played a pivotal role in shaping his career, and the discovery of Na’amal during advanced track training opened doors to expanded horizons and unprecedented opportunities.

Jerry’s role in the project provided him with hands-on experience in Squarespace, Typeform, Zapier, and data analytics. Reflecting on the experience, he expressed, “This project has underscored the importance of flexibility and a willingness to learn in a fast-paced, dynamic environment.” Beyond the technical aspects, Jerry highlighted the element of fun in completing the project, emphasizing the camaraderie and joy in collaborative problem-solving.

Jerry’s aspirations are ambitious and clear: “My goal is to leverage my expertise in web development to become a skilled software engineer capable of making a significant impact in the digital landscape through innovative solutions and meaningful contributions to the field.”

Yonatan Aschalew’s Odyssey and Growth:

Yonatan Aschew, Full-Stack Web Developer

Yonatan Aschalew, originally from Eritrea and currently residing in Ethiopia as a refugee, shared the challenges of his migration journey and the relentless pursuit of a better life. Despite the intensity of learning website development, Yonatan discovered the Na’amal programme through a friend, recognizing it as a significant opportunity for personal and professional growth.

Yonatan’s contributions to the project included embracing the learning curve of automation using tools like Zapier and gaining proficiency in managing Google Apps using App Script. Reflecting on the personal development aspects, he shared, “In terms of personal development, time management has been a significant lesson.” Yonatan also emphasized the joyous aspect of the project, stating, “Collaborating with my team has been a valuable aspect of this journey. Understanding each other’s strengths and perspectives has not only fostered a sense of unity but has also led to effective problem-solving.”

Yonatan’s aspirations are equally impactful: “Professionally, I aspire to make meaningful contributions in my field, taking on challenging projects that allow me to leverage my skills and expertise.”

Conclusion:

All smiles on a team meeting with members of the Na’amal and EqualReach teams as well the refugee talent working on their first remote client project!

Na’amal Agency’s launch signifies more than just the dawn of a new era in remote work solutions. It represents a commitment to creating meaningful opportunities for displaced talent, fostering transformative journeys through hands-on dedication. As Na’amal actively seeks work for its talented pool, the agency encourages businesses to reach out, recognizing the immense potential of refugee talents in contributing to global projects. With Jerry, Susan and Yonatan’s transformative journeys as a testament, Na’amal Agency stands poised to be a catalyst for positive change, epitomizing resilience, innovation, and triumph in the realm of remote work.

If you or your organization has projects in need of skilled and impactfully sourced talent, we invite you to connect with us here.

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Na'amal

Na’amal delivers a remote work readiness programme through self-paced asynchronous online modules, virtual interactive workshops, one-to-one mentorship.