Streaming platform Netflix has been working with industry partners to build the talent pipeline in the Middle East and North Africa region as it works with more Arab storytellers to tell global stories.

Last month, Netflix collaborated with writer’s hub Sard to train Egyptian women in screenwriting and discover untapped talent. The five-day training and upskilling program, Because She Created, which wrapped up this week and was completed by 22 aspiring creatives, was a part of the Netflix Fund for Creative Equity.

“The program offered underrepresented women in Al Said a unique experience to help strengthen their creative expression skills and allowed the Sard team to work closely with young, creative, and inspirational women, representing the uniqueness of Egyptian culture. It was a creative and inspirational journey that I hope to repeat for more aspiring female creatives from Egypt,” said Mariam Naoum, founder and CEO of Sard.

Games and intro helped establish the workshop goals, followed by a movie and a talk with Egyptian filmmaker Maggie Morgan, whose film From Meir to Meir was recently added to Netflix. Participants learned more about various storytelling styles, the value of imagination, and effectively directing their writing to support their creative development.

At the end of the program, two participants from the cohort were selected to join the Sard writing lab to work on special projects helmed by the Sard team.