Youssef Aziz -Advisor of the Year
Few years ago, the state of our accounting system was something that needed miracles to become close to “decent” before even living up to being considered aligned with some official accounting standards, whether locally or internationally. Nevertheless, around the same time, a gentleman called Youssef Aziz joined Aie Serve to support us in things related to our treasury, accounting and some legal paperwork.
Believe it or not, Youssef was that miracle that transformed the way Aie Serve does its financial work into becoming a model for other NGOs to follow. With the cooperation and hard work from several Board Members over the past 3 years or so, Youssef managed to not only develop the financial system of the organization, but also train the team on how to work on it and did regular auditing and follow up almost in an ongoing manner.
Nevertheless, his involvement didn’t stop there, but rather expanded to encompass his support in running our elections, overseeing all the proper documentation and legal work needed by NGOs to coordinate with the Lebanese Ministry of Interior (where Aie Serve is officially registered). Thus Youssef assisted in the redrafting of Aie Serve’s own bylaws making them adhere better with our vision and philosophy of work.
Building on that, around 2 years ago, Youssef and the President of Aie Serve, AfifTabsh, came together to develop a new pilot program that builds on the technical expertise of both individuals and aims at assisting other youth lead NGOs using a similar model of support that Youssef was giving to Aie Serve. At that point, Aie Consult Program was designed and lead thereafter by Youssef transferring it from being an idea to becoming one of the flagship programs of Aie Serve. Aie Consult’s services spread widely among other youth lead NGOs. In its pilot phase, the program received calls for support from more than 10 NGOs, and now counting more than 20 whereas the number of NGOs supported counts almost half that number due to limited resources. Through this program, Youssef was able to design a whole new model of how experienced individuals from civil society can support NGOs, not by charity and donations, but rather by sharing expertise and knowledge.
Thereafter, Youssef’s busy schedule and aspirations to continue his education by pursuing a PhD got him to prepare a transition plan for the Aie Consult program to be lead by a new Program Coordinator. For that purpose, he worked on providing the new coordinator with the needed tools, documents and follow up to ensure a smooth transition and successful follow up. Now the program is running smoothly with the leadership of the new program coordinator, TarekYunis, with the ongoing supervision and support of Youssef.
Thus, over the past few years, Youssef Aziz, as an Advisor, a de facto Board Member, a Program Coordinator and a Consultant played an integral role in the ongoing growth, development and evolution of Aie Serve. For that we would like to highlight our gratitude to such an inspiring young professional and to proclaim him as the “Advisor of the Year” for 2012.
In the name of all AieServians, we are proud to have you with us Youssef Aziz and looking forward for rest of the journey together in 2013 and beyond.