The Gaza Strip has been under relentless attack by Israel, which has taken a heavy toll on the entrepreneurs of Gaza. These entrepreneurs have been working together to improve the prospects of new graduates, but the ongoing violence has left them reeling.
One such entrepreneur, Mohammed Sharif Yousef, has been displaced from his home in Gaza City to the southern city of Khan Younis. He has more than 10 years of experience as an entrepreneur, trainer, mentor, and coach, but his displacement has put him in a new role as a volunteer relief worker.
Yousef has been delivering provisions to families in need using his motorcycle, but the increasing casualties from Israel’s aerial bombardment have forced him to stop going out.
The entrepreneurs in Yousef’s network have been finding technological solutions to Gaza’s problems and creating jobs for graduates with few work opportunities due to a 17-year siege imposed by Israel on Gaza.
The loss of their colleagues, including Tariq Thabet and Abdelhamid al-Fayoumi, has been devastating. Thabet had helped thousands of young people find jobs, while al-Fayoumi had founded Sanabel, which produced software and multimedia resources for the local and regional Arab markets.
The human cost of Israel’s offensive on Palestinians in Gaza has been staggering, with thousands of people killed or injured. The vast majority of the victims are civilians, and the targeting of the professional class has been particularly devastating.
The destruction goes beyond the physical, with the targeting of an ethnic group’s political and economic leadership known as “eliticide”. This has been a devastating blow to Gaza’s entrepreneurs, who have lost colleagues like Dr. Yasser al-Alam, known as the “godfather of entrepreneurship”.
The loss of these entrepreneurs has left a painful impact, but Yousef is determined to make their killings the fuel that pushes them towards the success of entrepreneurship in Gaza to complete their journey.
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