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News from the Iraq Foundation
May 2009 Activities, Issue 34
Dear Friends,

We would like to take this opportunity to inform you about our recent activities during the month of May.  IF is pleased to announce the donation and distribution of water cooler and generators, in partnership with the United Nations Development Program, to local schools in the southern town of Mdaina.  IF's Executive Director Rend Al-Rahim has traveled throughout Iraq and the region promoting our mission and appearing on several media programs.  Working to support human rights, IF has bestowed small grants to Iraqi NGOs to support a variety of initiative geared at advocating for human rights in Iraq. IF staff also set up literacy courses in Mdaina to assist semiliterate and illiterate Iraqis as well as train small business owners and teachers on relevant computer skills. In addition to these courses, IF is working hard to support Iraqi widows in Baghdad and Basra governorates.  The second cycle of our focused training program for widows continued throughout May in all four training centers. IF's Human Rights Advocacy Initiative (HRAI) team also  produced its fifth newsletter this month, which reports on the HRAI project and the human rights situation in Iraq.
As always, please do not hesitate to contact us should you have any questions about our projects or activities!

Joseph Sandor
Communication Officer
Iraq Foundation

In Collaboration with the UNDP, IF Donates Generators and Water Coolers to Schools in Mdaina Participating in Literacy Project
IF is pleased to announce the distribution of generators and drinking water coolers to local schools participating in IF's literacy projec in Mdaina.  The distribution took place on May 23, 2009 in partnership with the United Nations Development Project.  Mr. Abdulraheem Mohammed Jawhar,  Chairman of Al-Mdaina District Council, visited the Iraq Foundation's Mdaina Education Project (MEP), which provides literacy and computer training to the citizens of Mdaina District in Basra province.  Mr. Jawhar expressed thanks to the project's implementers  and distributed the Iraq Foundation's grant for the Literacy Project in Al-Mdaina District.  The MEP project provides a grant of generators and drinking water coolers to the community's school that participate in the project.  The schools' principals and the Head of the District of Mdaina  expressed their sincere thanks to the Iraq Foundation.

Learn more...

IF Implements Small Grants Program
MEPTo support our Human Rights Advocacy Initiative (HRAI), IF implemented a small grants program to support Iraqi NGOs and promote human rights.  IF will fund a total of ten projects.  Currently, IF is working with Iraqi NGOs to carry-out the first round of projects, which comprise four grants valued at $3,000 USD each.  The first grant was given to the Al-Dhawo Organization of Baghdad to conduct six workshops to raise awareness about women and children's rights.  The Anwar Humanitarian and Independent Organization of Basra was also awarded a small grant to conduct five workshops targeting students, minorities, refugees and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to raise awareness about minority and refugee rights and  the role of civil society to influence positive change in the government.  The third grant was awarded to the Rased Center for Human rights in Najaf to provide educational workshops to police officers, criminal investigators on detainee's rights.  The final grant of the first round was awarded to the Women Empowerment Center of Sulaimaniya to conduct ten one-day workshops and a series of children-led plays to promote the rights of women and children and reduce violence in the home.

Learn more about HRAI...

IF Holds Literacy Trainings in Southern Iraq

During May, IF began the literacy training courses, as part of the Mdaina Education Project (MEP).  The training courses are taking place in local schools in Mdaina, Iraq. The first course targets 100 illiterate adults and focuses on teaching basic literacy and on building a solid foundation in basic math. The second course targets 150 semiliterate adults and focuses on enhancing the participants' reading and writing abilities. Both courses will be conducted over the period of 3 months. IF would like to thank the Education Department in Al-Qorna for providing valuable literacy curricula to aid the Iraq Foundation in the implementation of these trainings. IF would also like to thank the following schools for providing classrooms to conduct our literacy courses:
  • The Mada'en school
  • The Nusayree School
  • The Dhefaf School
  • The Alwane School
In addition to the above activities, IF staff also continued the IT training component of the MEP project during the month of May.

Learn more about WEP...

IF Continues Training Iraqi Widows in Baghdad and Basra
Throughout May, the second cycle of training courses have continued in all four training locations in Baghdad and Basra, as part of our ongoing efforts to improve the lives of Iraqi widows through the Widow's Empowerment Project (WEP).  In addition, IF staff have placed several widows in jobs and are continuing their efforts to secure additional employment opportunities for participating widows in both the private and public sector. IF staff took WEP widows to a seminar on women entrepreneurs and businesses owners on May 23rd.  Later on May 26, IF staff began monthly mentoring meetings with the participating widows from the first cycle of trainings.  In addition, Mr. Mohammed Bashih, Head of the Qurna Municipal Council, visited the Al-Qurna training center in Basra and pledged his support to ensure that the widows recieve social benefits.

The WEP project, which began in May 2008, is designed to empower widows with practical job and income generation skills as well as an enhanced understanding of their rights and civic responsibilities.

Learn more about the Widow's Empowerment Project and View Photos...
In This Issue
Iraq Foundation Donates Water Cooler and Generators to Schools
IF Implements Small Grants Program
IF Holds Literacy Trainings
IF Continues Training Iraqi Widows in Baghdad and Basra.
IF In the Media
IF Publishes 5th Human Rights Newsletter
radio tower
IF In the Media:
During the month of May, IF's Executive Director  Rend Al-Rahim traveled extensively in the Middle East and interviewed with the BBC. Ms. Al-Rahim appeared on the May 18 BBC Arabic News and also participated in a radio interview with BBC Arabic Radio. Both interviews on the subject of anti-corruption and integrity in Iraq.

HRAI Newsletter
IF Publishes 5th Human Rights Newsletter!
The Human Rights Advocacy Initiative (HRAI) published its fifth newsletter in May. The newsletter reports on the human rights situation in  Iraq. Formed in May 2008 by the Iraq Foundation, the  goal of the HRAI project is to empower Iraqi human rights leaders to be better advocates for human rights. Published in Arabic, HRAI's monthly newsletters are available on our website.

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