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News Publications and Media: Education

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New Sign New Heroes hosted by Robert Redford is a four hour series that travels the globe to explore the ideas and impact of "social entrepreneurs who measure their bottom line in lives." This series premiered on the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) on June 28th and July 5th 2005. DVD and CD's are available through Oregon Public Broadcasting at 1(800)440-2651.

A particular social entrepreneur, Dina Abdel Wahab, has started preschools in Egypt for that nation's once neglected children of disabilities. As a new innovative activist she is determined to make a long-term systemic change in a society filled with inequality and inhumanity.

Dina Abdel Wahab's son, Ali, was born with Down Syndrome. In Cairo there were no preschools that would meet his needs or were equipped with special education teachers. She decided if Ali were to have a normal life, she would need to improve preschool education in Egypt. She created The Baby Academy, a chain of preschools for children three months to five years old, based in child-centered philosophy. She brought in people with backgrounds in early childhood education and special education and developed a program to meet the children's developmental needs and to help children achieve their potential. The mission of The Baby Academy is to become a leader in early childhood education throughout Egypt and the Middle East. Dina hopes to achieve this by opening more preschools in Cairo and franchising the idea. Dina Abdel Wahab also now advocates with the Egyptian government for inclusion opportunities for special needs children in Egypt's mainstream education system. For more information, visit the PBS website.

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