Heba Atef, a third-year student at the Arab Open University’s Faculty of Information with Down syndrome, joined the crew of the "Journey of Humanity", flying from Cairo to Khartoum, with tens of people with Down syndrome and their families.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that Down syndrome occurs in one in 1,000 and one in 1,100 live births worldwide, and that each year approximately 3,000 to 5,000 children are born with the condition worldwide.
It is believed that there are more than 100,000 people with Down syndrome in Egypt, according to estimates by NGOs.
According to Article 81 of Egypt’s 2014 constitution, the state must provide work opportunities for individuals with disabilities, and allocate a percentage of these opportunities to them, in addition to adequately equipping public utilities and the surrounding environment.
It also mandates a five percent quota for persons with disabilities in all schools and universities, and a five percent employment quota for persons with disabilities in all public and private businesses.
Egypt has designated 2018 the year of persons with special needs, who are estimated at 10 million of Egypt's 104 million population.