1001 Inventions Engages Children in Historic Cairo

Lesser-known stories of science come to life as part of Al-Khalifa Summer Camp

Cairo, 17 August 2021 – 1001 Inventions introduced children living in Cairo to the wonders of science while learning about the architectural heritage of the old city. The activities were organised within Al-Khalifa Summer Camp. 1001 Inventions activities were made possible with the valuable support of Al Alfi Foundation,  an independent philanthropic foundation aiming at developing people with high capability to improve their surrounding social and economic environment.

Al-Khalifa Summer Camp is organised as part of the Athar Lina Heritage Design Thinking School, funded by the Drosos Foundation.  The school is one of Athar Lina initiative projects that aim to establish and strengthen ties between the children and their neighbourhood’s heritage.

During the first two weeks of August, the team of local science explainers delivered a broad set of 1001 Inventions themed engaging activities. They ensured COVID-19 protective measures were in place at each session, so everyone could enjoy their experience safely. In this way, they raised children’s awareness about the importance of protecting their health not only during this summer camp but in their daily lives.

1001 Inventions’ programme inspired children with exciting film screenings, hands-on activities and science demonstrations. Children learned about pioneers from the golden age of Arabic science, such as Al-Zahrawi, Al-Kindi, Ibn Sina, Ibn al-Haytham, Jabir ibn Hayyan and many other scientists whose remarkable contributions still impact our world today!

Children engaged in hands-on demonstrations on how the digestive system works, they built a model for the lungs and learned about the respiratory system. They also learned about the different body organs through a dissection activity. The young learners were introduced to the applications of chemistry as they made their own soap, hand sanitiser and toothpaste.

In a session on architecture, children went on a virtual trip using Virtual Reality sets to the “Suleymaniye Mosque”. Guided by the creative team of science explainers, children brought their visit to life by building domes and 3D structures.

The varied set of 1001 Inventions activities were organised in two historical sites managed by the Megawra-Built Environment Collective inside the “Al-Khalifa” district. In addition to sparking children interest in science, participating children, who are residents of this district in Historic Cairo, were totally inspired by their surroundings and learned about the importance of historic sites in their community.

About Athar Lina

Athar Lina (www.atharlina.com) is a participatory conservation initiative that aims to establish modalities of citizen participation in heritage conservation based on an understanding of the monument as a resource not a burden. Athar Lina (The monument is ours) believes that only when cultural heritage is beneficial to the community, will the community become an active partner in its conservation. It sees the conservation decision-making process as an inclusive participatory process between stakeholders and believes that conservation can be a vehicle for development. Athar Lina is run by the Built Environment Collective|Megawra, a twin organisation including an NGO and an architecture firm.


About Al Alfi Foundation for Human and Social Development

An independent philanthropic foundation aiming at developing people with high capability to improve their surrounding social and economic environment.  A high-impact foundation seeking the highest social return for our philanthropic interventions.


About 1001 Inventions

1001 Inventions is an award-winning, British based organisation that creates international educational campaigns and initiatives aiming to spark young people’s interest in science. 1001 Inventions believes in the power of culture and storytelling to encourage innovation and promote diversity and inclusion. As such, 1001 Inventions produces themed transmedia productions uncovering fascinating contributions of lesser-known pioneers from Arab, Asian and other Eastern cultures. Such creative public engagement productions cover a wide array of themes including health and wellbeing, machines and robotics, chemistry and its applications as well as animals and nature.

1001 Inventions has engaged with over 450 million people across the globe through effective grassroots outreach as well as working with a network of international partners, including UNESCO, the United Nations World Food Programme, National Geographic and leading academics to produce interactive exhibits, shorts films, live shows, books and educational resources that are being used by hundreds of thousands of educators around the world.