CLC in Egypt
The Christian Life Community (CLC) in Egypt annually organizes a 3-to-5-days exhibition “Baladi” – Arabic word means “my country” – since 1995, typically taking place in December. This year’s edition was held at the Sacred Heart School – Ghamra from the 7th to 9th of December. The event aims to promote local Egyptian handicrafts and specialties, providing exposure opportunities for small non-governmental organizations (NGOs), charities, local communities, and individuals with small projects. In this encounter, the exhibitors have a chance to test their products, understand the clients’ needs and enhance the quality of their work, by interacting and sharing their experience with clients and other exhibitors. The CLC’s objective is to support sustainable and community-driven businesses while helping those in need.
The exhibition usually features approximately 40 NGOs and individuals from various Egyptian governorates. Visitors can find a wide range of gift ideas for Christmas, home decorations, and items for loved ones. Products include hand-embroidered linen, scarves, bags, woodwork, food, kids’ toys, accessories, Christmas decorations, and more. Additionally, a family day is organized alongside the exhibition with activities for children, games, arts and crafts, Santa’s visit, and Christmas carols.
ach year, the preparation for the exhibition begins in October with a group of volunteers from the CLC. Everyone is eager and willing to help with whatever they can do for “Baladi”. Tasks include set up, decoration, cooking, advertising, coordinating with exhibitors, and preparing kids’ activities. The organizing team comprised of 21 members this year, with three new members joining the team, energizing and supporting each other and consequently transferring same vibes to the exhibitors.
Despite some exhibitors not making much profit, they continue to participate because of the opportunity to interact with others and spend a few days in a warm family atmosphere. They appreciate the love and spirit they experience during “Baladi”. They also emphasize how their work evolved over the years with “Baladi”. On the visitors’ side, they enjoy the Christmas spirit while shopping, and socializing year after year. Many visitors come to provide positive support to the exhibitors.
After the exhibition, the organizing team, exhibitors and visitors realized that what mattered most was the spirit of support and encouragement given to each other. Baladi is all about providing love and encouragement to one another. The excitement and joy that follows each exhibition are worth the effort of all participants.