SEKEM wins Land for Life Award – Outstanding contribution towards Land Degradation Neutrality

SEKEM was selected to be the winner of the 2015 Land for Life Award for its true influence in combating land degradation. The award ceremony was held in Inner Mongolia with a huge number of high-level decision makers and politicians from all over the world participating.


“We are impressed by your organization’s achievement in revitalizing dry lands through biodynamic agriculture methods, your continuous contribution to sustainable land management as well as the contribution your organization has made towards human development”, the notification by the UNCCD says.

SEKEM receives the UNCCD Land for Life Award 2015
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UNCCD Logo United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification

United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification

The Land for Life Award was established by the UNCCD (United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification) in 2011 to recognize excellence and innovation by individual groups in sustainable land management with a particular focus on achieving land degradation neutrality. The UNCCD especially notes “the establishment of infrastructure that SEKEM achieved by building different schools, a medical center and lately the Heliopolis University for Sustainable Development”. By recognizing and showcasing SEKEMs work the Land for Life program wants to demonstrate that land degradation neutrality is compelling and achievable.

5th Kubuqi International Desert Forum

SEKEM received the Land for Life Award on the 28th of July at the 5th Kubuqi International Desert Forum in Inner Mongolia. The event focused on the different approaches to combat Desertification, Land Degradation and Drought (DLDD). High-level decision makers, planners and experts from different continents participated in the forum. Among others, the former British Prime Ministers Tony Blair gave a speech and Ban Ki Moon, Secretary General of the United Nations delivered a video message.


As SEKEM representative Maximilian Abouleish-Boes, Chief Sustainable Development Officer, accepted the Land for Life Award in China: “We accept this award with deep gratitude and as motivation for us to increase our future efforts in keeping and building “land for life” in Egypt – not only for ecological reasons, but also to continue with our mission of promoting sustainable development that includes societal and cultural life as well as an economy of love”, he said.

Since 38 years committed to sustainable development

For 38 years, SEKEM is committed to the reclamation of desert land, turning it into fertile soil for the cultivation of biodynamic agriculture. Thus, the Egyptian initiative does not only preserve, but also build soil fertility, which is the basis for sustainable agriculture, especially in an arid country like Egypt. The CEO of SEKEM, Helmy Abouleish, sees the need of “land for life” as a very urgent one, especially in Egypt, as the growing desertification causes huge troubles in many dimensions: Egypt is dependent on imports, living below the water poverty line and the nutrition of the population cannot be secured without substantial and growing food imports. Thus, “the Land for Life Award encourages us even more to continue our efforts towards a sustainable future”, Helmy Abouleish says.

Logo of the 2015 Land For Life Award Press Release Logo of the 2015 Land For Life Award Press Release by UNCCD
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