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Ahmad Denno

[Photo: Dora Csala]

Most Creative People 2017

Ahmad Denno

Founder, Eed be Eed

For easing the transition from Syria to Germany

The Problem: When refugees get to a new country, most don’t know anyone or speak the language.

The Epiphany: After arriving in Germany in 2014, Ahmad Denno, who worked in marketing and advertising in his native Aleppo, found that he was one of the few English speakers at his Berlin refugee shelter, which allowed him to better navigate German culture. He became an in­­formal source for refugees needing help. “Syrians here find that communi­cation is very hard, making problems bigger,” says Denno. In response, he decided to create Eed be Eed (“Hand in Hand”), an Arabic-language site with practical guides to everyday life in Berlin.

The Execution: Denno and 30 volunteers launched Eed be Eed in November 2016. Using donated computers and coworking spaces, the team has been posting daily about everything from internship opportunities to local café etiquette.

The Result: The Eed be Eed site has received thousands of visitors, and its Facebook page is an important hub for the community. To reach even more people—especially those without easy internet access—Denno (who was granted protection sta­tus in February) recently launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise money for a print edition. 

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