A Former UN official, a loving wife, a proud mother of three and an avid reader. Even before she was able to read, Naouel discovered stories with her grandmother, who was to her, the “best storyteller in the world”. She is a voracious reader, and sometimes, glimpses from the imaginary world cross into her real world.
Born in Algiers, she went to public schools and graduated from Algiers’ university, studied foreign languages and started teaching immediately after graduation at her university. She moved to Italy to join the United Nations, where she built her career. She met her husband, Stefano, and they started their family in Dubai 20 years ago, where they raised their three boys.
At the age of 22, Naouel co-founded her first association for the empowerment of rural women in Algeria. In Rome, she joined AIWA (Arab Italian Women Association). Both associations promote traditions and culture. In Dubai, when she was working at the Emirates Literature Foundation, among the projects and activities she ran, her pet project was The Readers’ Majlis: her own dream book club that reflects the UAE reality. Members could read in their preferred language, introducing to each other their literature and culture.
Naouel has spearheaded and co-authored Foodprints: A Collective Memoir, a collection of stories from each author’s homeland put together with special recipes that evoked deep memories and nostalgia.