A doctor examines a young patient in a clinic supported by the Aga Khan Foundation and housed in a building restored by the Aga Khan Trust for Culture.
Photo: AKDN / Tara Todras-WhitehallAl-Azhar Park has proven to be a powerful catalyst for urban renewal in the neighbouring district of Darb al-Ahmar. But the stunning park is only the most visible part of a broad programme created to revitalise what was once one of the poorest districts in Cairo.
In conjunction with the construction of the Park and the restoration of landmark buildings and monuments, AKDN and its partners have created a number of social programmes ranging from health and education to microfinance and housing rehabilitation, each designed to address a development challenge.
“For any important work of restoration to survive and to thrive into the longer-range future, it must contribute to the well-being of those who live in its presence – so that they in turn will have reason to safeguard its enduring viability.”
Speech by His Highness the Aga Khan at the Inauguration of the Restored Monuments in Darb al-Ahmar, Cairo, Egypt, 26 October 2007At the Darb al-Ahmar health clinic, supported by AKDN, a number of projects address behavioural issues, such as the “Bride-to-Be” programme for young women, which offers information on sexual and reproductive health, child rearing, and managing household finances. Other health-related programmes extend to improvements to the water supply network, including the replacement of lead junctures, which has benefited hundreds of families.
Parts of the sewage network have been upgraded and extended, providing sanitation to some areas for the first time. Trash that had accumulated in the streets was removed. Housing rehabilitation included the installation of sanitation on each floor of apartment buildings – an improvement that was especially important for women. New drainage works have prevented the pooling of water, thereby reducing the potential for waterborne disease.
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