Great news! The Iraqi Children Foundation (ICF) and its Iraqi NGO partner have come to the rescue of a clinic serving disabled Iraqi children in Fallujah, Iraq. After an ICF visit to the clinic last October and a one-time emergency infusion of funds earlier this year, ICF is thrilled to be able to fund the clinic's care for disabled children on an ongoing basis. ICF has helped disabled children in the past but this is - by far - the largest project for disabled children that ICF has ever launched.
Think of a 15-year old girl with a beautiful smile and brain atrophy that makes it difficult for her to move. She feels she is a burden to her family and faces challenges from society. When she learned about the clinic, she went for a visit and received free services and a wheelchair. She dreams one day of walking and having her own children.
In the first quarter of 2023, 83% of patients served at the Fallujah clinic were children. Cases the clinic handles include paralysis, social and behavioural conditions including severe autism spectrum disorder, hearing and visual impairment, and disabilities as a result of injury. Birth defects are also a big issue, apparently in some cases as a result of close relatives marrying.
ICF is excited to partner with our long-time, trusted Iraqi NGO partner the Iraq Health Access Organization (IHAO), with ICF funding services for children and IHAO funding services for adults. IHAO is led by an alumnus of the prestigious US Fulbright scholarship program and was awarded the Richard C. Holbrooke Leadership award by Refugees International in Washington, DC in 2018.
Thank you for your kind and generous support for our beloved Iraqi children that makes possible life-changing projects. From disabled kids to trafficking victims to child laborers, we want to give each of them hope for a brighter future! YOU make that possible through your gifts and we are so grateful.
PS Not a monthly donor yet? All new monthly donors of any amount from as little as $10 to as much as $200 a month will earn an extra free month bonus for Iraqi children! Why not sign up here today? Thank you.
You've seen the media stories: experts and reporters writing about the 20th anniversary of the Iraq war and lessons learned. What you've likely not seen: a "good news" story about Iraq that involves every one of you!
It is a story of veterans, Gold Star families, members of the global Iraqi diaspora, US businesses working in Iraq, and ordinary Americans like me, together working in friendship with the people of Iraq to change the future of their most at risk children: orphans, street kids, child laborers, disabled kids, child trafficking victims, and girls at risk of early marriage. Together we are changing the future for kids like:
Aren't children like these a great investment? If you'd like to be a voice for the voiceless, please invite friends to make a simple gift of $20, $30, or more for Iraq's children. This week, April 3 - 7, donations up to $50 earn an extra 50% bonus in free money for Iraqi children!
The ICF team expresses its deepest gratitude to all of you for standing and acting with us. This is how we change the future: one child at a time!
*names changed for privacy
Sometimes, all it takes is one face to face encounter with a precious Iraqi child. That's all it took for us!
It started with a little boy dressed as an airline pilot for a skit the Hope Bus kids performed for ICF visitors. Two girls were dressed up as a lawyer and doctor, and several boys dressed up for other careers, like a policeman.
After the skit, my husband Steve - previously a NASA executive - had a one-on-one chat with the little "pilot," with a translator, of course. He told the boy that as a pilot, he could also be an astronaut! As the ICF team prepared to depart in a van, the little pilot came running after my husband but staff shooed him away. Steve got off the van and went back to find the boy and gave him a big hug.
After we left Iraq, we got a touching message from the Hope Bus manager. He said the "pilot" kept asking about Steve for two days after our visit, wondering when he would see Steve again! That's all it took. Our hearts were captured.
What captures your heart? ICF is grateful for your support for Iraq's orphans and most vulnerable children. You are the ones who have made possible the life-changing Hope Bus experience for this little "pilot" and more than 600 other kids! Most of all, it means love. For these kids, the message of love means: You are not alone. You are not forgotten. We are here for you.
May this season of holidays be special for each of you and your loved ones.
All the best,
PS If you are searching for a special gift for a loved one, how about making a gift in their honor to Iraqi children like this little pilot?
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Iraqi Children Foundation - CFC#95191
PO Box 233,Falls Church, VA 22040-0233
What joy! In the midst of poverty, a group of Iraqi orphans and street kids have a big reason to party: a third Hope Bus has been launched to give them a chance to learn, eat a nutritious meal, and receive social and psychological support. No wonder they beam with joy!
The new Hope Bus 3 was forecast to reach 50 boys and girls in the desolate, poverty-stricken neighborhood where they live (pictured below). But the director of the project revealed that up to 75 children are registered. Even with three fully operating Hope Buses - serving an average of 150 boys and girls total each school day - more children remain unserved in this forgotten community.
For each of you who have donated to the orphans and most vulnerable kids in Iraq, we say a huge THANK YOU on their behalf! But so many more children need help - education, legal protection from criminals and traffickers, help ending child labor, healthcare services, and other support. Want do more for these precious children?
Mark your calendar for "Giving Tuesday" - November 29,2022 - and your donation will earn extra FREE funds to support these kids! Don't miss it!
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How we love and repect our team of women and men "Street Lawyers!" Their expert interventions in the lives of boys and girls in trouble is life changing, not just for themselves but often others - maybe a poor widowed mother or siblings. Hassan's* case is a poignant reminder.
Hassan* (16) was picked up by police after breaking into a car and stealing money. He faced the prospect in court of a harsh two-year prison sentence. But Hassan was not facing this alone. No, a Street Lawyer - provided free of cost by donors like you - stepped in. You see, teenage Hassan was the family breadwinner, trying to support a desperately poor, blind mother as well as his little 10 year old sister. When he was picked up, the family had not eaten in two days. The Street Lawyer worked with Hassan in advance of the court hearing. The stolen money was repaid to the owner and they persuaded the victim to withdraw charges. Then, when the Street Lawyer explained Hassan's tragic story in court, the judge was touched and acted with mercy, dropping the penalty to six months in prison suspended.
What if a Street Lawyer you support had not come to Hassan's defense? What would have become of his blind mother and little sister without a breadwinner? What would have happened to other children and their families in the hundreds of legal cases handled by Street Lawyers each year, involving charges of theft, drugs, violence, trafficking, and or other offenses?
Thanks to YOU, a lawyer DID come to Hassan's defense and his life was changed, just as other at risk Iraqi children's lives are being changed by your kindness and generosity. We are so grateful to have you on the team!
PS Not yet a monthly donor? Inspired to be? Sign up today and earn a one-month free match (as small as $10 up to as much as $200!) to support women and men lawyers like those who helped Hassan!
*Name and picture changed to protect child's privacy.
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Iraqi Children Foundation
PO Box 233, Falls Church, VA 22040-0233
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