Tens of thousands of women are sent to prison in Egypt every year. Their crime? Not being able to repay loans borrowed for amounts of only a few hundred dollars.
These women are known simply as “Al Gharemaat” or “The Fined”. The money they borrow goes to pay for medicine, emergencies and to take care of their families. However, the consequences for when they are not able to pay off the loans are devastating and lead to significant prison sentences, and having to leave their children and families to the unknown.
Horizon FCB Dubai created and launched a humane initiative: ‘Breakchains with Blockchain’. Inspired by the reasons for their imprisonment, we created in collaboration with artists from around the world, NFTs. Each is designed to tell a woman’s story, the story of why she was sentenced. Each NFT is priced at the amount it will cost to free them, from their sentence and give them a second chance at life.
Reham Mufleh, general manager of Horizon FCB Dubai commented: “This is one of these moments when you fall in love with your job all over again, when you see how creativity, data & technology can change people’s lives for the better!
Such a passion project. When we first started working on it, it was just another job. But the more we learnt about this issue, the more we wanted to help & the more we wanted to give. And every time we faced a hurdle, we never gave up, we just kept going until we freed the first 3 women from their debt. This is a feeling you can never put a label on”.
Mazen Jawad CEO of Horizon Holdings added “helping others in need hasn’t changed. Our Never Finished approach has changed. Learning about this social issue created a disruption in us to stop and think… but listening to the heartbreaking stories of those women was enough to trigger creativity, effort, engagement and commitment from the whole agency feeling a sense of responsibility and commitment to enable change. Bringing data, creativity and technology together in perfect equilibrium to enable freedom for those women to unite them back with their families and loved ones was priceless”.
We launched ‘Breakchains with Blockchain’ on Mother’s Day in Egypt on the 21st of March 2022. On this day three mothers were released with funds raised from NFTs, meaning these women are no longer “Al Gharemaat”, and can finally be home with their families.
One of these women is “Rabia”, who when her sister died wanted to honour her memory and took a loan to pay for her daughter’s wedding. After being diagnosed with breast cancer she was too unwell to work and make the payments, she was arrested and sentenced to 2 years in prison. The amount she borrowed was only USD$254.
“Children of Female Prisoners Association” is one of the most active NGOs in Egypt working with Al Gharemaat and their children. It was founded in 1990 by Ms Nawal Mustafa, winner of the “Hope Maker” award from His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. Working in partnership with Horizon FCB Dubai, together they are raising donations and awareness of this issue around the world, by utilizing a medium everyone is talking about, NFTs.
We still have more women to free, but even when they are all released our work is still never finished. We will continue working to raise awareness about this issue, ensuring the women have the resources and education they need until the Al Gharemaat are a thing of the past.
Client – Children of Female Prisoners Association
Founder & CEO – Nawal Mostafa
Director of Communications – Nader Eissa
Social Worker – Hafza Obied
Agency – Horizon FCB Dubai:
CEO Horizon Holdings – Mazen Jawad
General Manager – Reham Mufleh
Executive Creative Director – Rodrigo Leal Rodrigues
Associate Creative Director – Jonathan Cruz
Senior Art Director – Zayd Abidi
Senior Arabic Copywriter – Bassam Doss
Senior Copywriter – Lucy Elder
Associate Creative Director – Antonio Cue
Traffic Manager – Rosemarie Jimenez
Senior Video Editor – Anthony Heneine
Video Editor and Motion Designer – Alman Magpusao
Sarah Nasser – Account Director
Motion Graphics – Sachin Jain
Diogo Borges – Technologist
Fady Youssef Rofaeel
Paulo de Almeida
Production House: Film DNA
Director: Dina Abdelraheem
Executive Producer: Dina Abdelraheem & Nour Abdelraheem
DP: Ahmed Hamdi
Directors Producer: Dahlia Galal
Production: Mina Maher and Hatem Samir
Photographer: Abdelrahman Ibrahim
Equipment: Haytham El Said
Sound Eng: Mostafa Metwally
A Special thanks to Hani Osama from Horizon FCB Dubai & Film DNA
Post Production: Cult
Editor: Samir Radwan
Post Producer: Hazem helmy
Thanks to budist
A Special Thanks to Adham El sherief
Music Production: Vox Haus
Head of Projects: Matheus Gugelmim
Head of Music Production / Audio Mix: Daniel Dalla Corte
Music/SFX Producer: Icaro Guedes
Music/SFX Producer: Cassio Machado