Yezidi Children's Safe Space

by Free Yezidi Foundation
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Yezidi Children's Safe Space
Yezidi Children's Safe Space
Yezidi Children's Safe Space
Yezidi Children's Safe Space
Yezidi Children's Safe Space
Yezidi Children's Safe Space
Yezidi Children's Safe Space
Yezidi Children's Safe Space
Yezidi Children's Safe Space
Yezidi Children's Safe Space
Yezidi Children's Safe Space
Yezidi Children's Safe Space
Yezidi Children's Safe Space


Children’s Center - Teaching Kinder and Gentler Parenting to Create Better Generations


Dear supporters of the Free Yezidi Foundation,


As you all know, we have been working with the Yezidi community since ISIS started a genocidal campaign in August 2014. Through the years we have seen many things that need to be discussed in our own community. Things that in many cases are shoved under the rugs and not talked about. We want to address those things with our community members, make the older generation and the younger generation more aware of how things in society should be handled. One of these subjects is parenting and the treatment of children in general. In the Middle East, there are not adequate protections for children regarding their treatment by family members. Aside from this, we have to keep in mind that displacement children are even more vulnerable to violence, exploitation, and sexual abuse. We are aware of this, and at FYF we try reform outdated cultural practices and dispel myths that parents should use violence against their children to discipline them. We try to educate parents how to be kinder and loving parents, and to discipline their children in a way where they are encouraging good behavior instead of using violence. Not only does this provide immediate benefits for children living in the camp, but it also creates healthier families for the future. This sets a new example for children and future generations to lead lives free of violence. All the FYF Children center staff are trained in basic psychological first aid for children and can identify children who are in great need in our community. Our centers are a safe space where children’s voices are heard and we make sure that they feel comfortable and understand that they need to be treated well.



Aside from educating parents, one of FYF’s top priorities to educate children. Recently we had over one hundred Yezidi children graduate from the Children’s Center. These children have been diligently attending classes there for three months. The FYF children’s center fosters a safe and nurturing environment where children can be children again, despite their challenging circumstances in camp. We prepare children for life after the camp when they return back to their homes. In the future, we will continue our focus on education and the treatment of trauma. In addition, thanks to our children’s center, we were able to ensure that mothers participating in our women’s center program had access to daycare. Providing a safe space for children allows mothers to participate in educational courses and therefore expand their horizons. Those mothers would not be able to participate if there was not a safe place to leave their children while they are in the women’s center. 


FYF is guided by the goal of creating long-term change, one person at a time. Together we go Towards a Brighter Future!!




 - Pari Ibrahim
Executive Director
Free Yezidi Foundation



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Free Yezidi Foundation Report: Impact of Potential Withdrawal of US Troops from Syria

Dear Friends,

The Free Yezidi Foundation has written a report outlining the impact of a potential withdrawal or drawdown of United States forces from Syria. This can have serious consequences on the security of minorities, including Yezidis, and the reasonable prospects of recovery and safe, dignified return to Sinjar and other lands. The same is true for other minorities, including Iraqi and Syrian Christians. The report is below attached. You can also find the report on our website here. We cannot overstate the importance of security and stability in Eastern Syria and Iraq if we are every to consider a safe and sustainable place for minorities in the future.

- Pari Ibrahim
Executive Director
Free Yezidi Foundation

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Pari Ibrahim, Founder and Executive Director Free Yezidi Foundation.
Credit photo: Ralph Reutimann 


Dear Friends,

Last week I participated in the Decade of the Women forum in Iceland to promote gender equity and the Sustainable Development Goals. For me all the SDGs are important, but SDG #5 is of special value.

"Gender equality matters. Showing that it matters strengthens those that are living with inequality. Many of the women appreciate seeing women leaders, it shows that in the future equality can be achieved. With this in mind, strength to fight for equality rises."

I look every day when I wake up to the peacock I am holding in my hand in the picture above. The peacock is the symbol of the Yezidi religion. It shows me strength and beauty. I grew up in a community where women are not granted equal rights and opportunities. We are all human beings, we all belong on this earth, yet we forget or are not willing to recognize that some people of different religions or genders are not treated with respect and dignity. My peacock has equal feathers. When the peacock opens its feathers, they are all equal in length and beauty. The strength and wisdom of our people and of our gender should be recognised and respected equally as others, and we will fight until it is so.

We were invited to the event by wonderful partners and donors. Please see the information below about a generous and exciting matching campaign, up to $100,000!




Reykjavik, Iceland - December 17, 2018.

As part of the Decade of Women Forum this week in Iceland 5th Element Group PBC and its partner Solver announced a US $1 million year-end matching grant campaign to benefit women and girls.

The first non-profit partner selected for the matching funds award is the Free Yezidi Foundation, founded by Pari Ibrahim, which is responding to the brutal genocide of the Yezidi community by ISIS, trough a variety of strategic support initiatives for women and children, from psychological services to computer skill training, that help these survivors re-enter society.

The announcement was inspired by the story of courageous vulnerability told to the world by 2018 Nobel Laureate Nadia Murad, who was made a sex slave by ISIS but escaped and then spoke out to help end the outrage of sexual violence as a weapon of war, and to secure freedom and basic rights for the Yezidi people. 


"Nadia and Pari both remind us that the fight for any cause like this is about a fight for communities, and for the dignity of individual people. The Yezidi people are emblematic of people in captivity, people neglected, all around the world."
- Jim Van Eerden,  President 5th Element

The match donation was directed trough 5th Element Group PBC and its partner Solver to address the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals. Funding support was provided by Semnani Family Foundation, in connection with the work of the SDG Impact Fund. This year's campaigns all involve projects that uplift women and girls and bring attention to key aspects of the effort to help.

Read full press release here.


Nadia Murad, 2018 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate.


By supporting the Free Yezidi Foundation, you support Yezidi women to become leaders in our community and to fight for fair and equal treatment. Our community needs this.

If you donate by the end of this year you will double your amount with no extra cost to you. What that means is that if we raise $100, the donors will match it with $100. If we end up raising $80,000, the donors will match it with $80,000.

Every donation helps our community to address trauma and move towards recovery, provide guidance on justice and accountability, and also give humanitarian support to members of our community who are displaced and living in tents once again this winter. 

We are appreciative that you have continued to donate to our cause and your generosity and support is an encouraging reminder of why I began these projects; to help those most vulnerable in a post-genocide setting. I hope you will consider telling your friends and family to support our projects, especially since any donation will be doubled until 31st of December. 

In US/UK/Canada, you can donate to any of the following GlobalGiving links:

Yezidi women's center - programs for 2019
Yezidi children's center -  programs for 2019
Justice for Yezidi Women and Girls

In Europe or elsewhere, you can donate here:

Free Yezidi

I really hope we can, once again, count on your support.

I wish you and your loved ones Happy Holidays and best wishes in the New Year!


- Pari Ibrahim
Executive Director
Free Yezidi Foundation

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Giving Tuesday, it's all about giving!



Dear Friends,

The holiday season has begun and in light of this giving time of year, we urge you to remember to support the Free Yezidi Foundation. With your generous gift, you can help ensure that Yezidi survivors have a bright future and are able to recover from traumas they should have never had to endure. On this Giving Tuesday please support the Free Yezidi Foundation in our work to serve the women and children of the Yezidi community. 

One example of what we have done so far:

Community Sensitisation Activities in Khanke IDP Camp
Fall 2018

From April to June 2018, FYF psychologists offered lay counseling / basic MHPSS worker training to Yezidi women in Khanke IDP camp in two separate courses. The first one was a 10 week course with 2 hour weekly classes, and the second was an intensive full-time course for 6 days. The aim of these courses is to build capacity for basic mental health support work among the Yezidi women. 15 of our trainees have successfully graduated from both courses and they are now working for FYF. They call themselves Harikara, meaning "helper" in Kurmanji language. This project is funded and overseen by the UN Trust Fund to End Violence Against Women.


FYFteam discussing trauma and recovery with men in the community


After graduating, the Harikara ran a community sensitazation pilot, visiting tents and talking to camp residents about the impact of trauma on the community and about common mental health difficulties. They also taught the residents simple coping strategies, such as breathing exercises. With the support of our staff, the Harikara prepared a mental health information leaflet to distribute during their community work. Our community leaflet is both in Arabic and Kurmamji and uses illustrations for residents who might have difficulties in reading. 


Trauma, recovery, and stabilisation techniques with women and girls


The pilot was a success on all fronts. The Harikara themselves were very enthusiastic, gaining confidence and respect. They reached 104 members of the community in one week, and were able to refer those who needed more help to appropriate caregivers. The sessions were appreciated, especially as they were given by members of the Yezidi community. By the end of November 2018, the Harikara have visited 187 tents and provided basic information about psychological education and care to nearly one thousand people.


FYF is run by Yezidi women who are empowered to share knowledge and strength with others


Funding for this innovative project will expire midway through 2019, and we hope to continue to make sure our Harikara can keep doing their fantastic work with our community. Aside from this we have other great projects that you can support. If you would like to contribute, please see below.

For European donations, please click here.

U.S. tax deductible donations can be made to our specific project through the following links:
Children’s Center
Women’s Center
Justice Project 

I would like to thank our Foundation's friends and donors, and I hope we can count on your support for the coming year.


- Pari Ibrahim
Executive Director
Free Yezidi Foundation

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FYF Statement - Nadia Murad wins Nobel Peace Prize


Nobel Peace Prize winner Nadia Murad

Dear Friends,

Before ISIS began its genocidal campaign against our people, hardly anyone had heard of the Yezidis, our community, our religion, or our culture. Now, after this tragedy, the world knows who we are and what we have suffered. We are very proud of Nadia Murad for winning the Nobel Peace Prize and her struggle to help the Yezidis.

Sadly and incredibly, there are still thousands of Yezidi women and girls missing. Four years later, there are still thousands of women and girls who are either suffering as sex slaves or have been killed. Sex slaves, in 2018, because of our religion.

Thankfully, thousands of women and girls like Nadia have escaped or been rescued. It is important for the international community to remember that many of those survivors are living in huts, tents, or unfinished buildings with little access to daily needs, much less psychological care. It is absolutely imperative that the good will and sympathy extended to Nadia also reaches the thousands of other survivors who are in desperate need. We believe the Nobel Peace Prize can galvanize action and sympathy to the Yezidi cause. This must not be seen as a chance for superficial photos, grandstanding, or entertainment by governments or opportunists, but instead should catalyze meaningful humanitarian aid and human rights responses. The failure to uphold the responsibility to protect and standing treaties on genocide and crimes against humanity cannot be ameliorated by prizes or congratulatory messages. There must be real action, and there must be justice.


Nadia’s Nobel Peace Prize could be a great opportunity to sensitize the international community about the Yezidi genocide and make people aware of the current difficulties that the Yezidis face living in IDP camps.


The Yezidis have not obtained accountability and more needs to be done in order to take the ISIS perpetrators to real trials in courts of law. We urge lawyers and human rights actors to see this as a serious matter. Nadia also called on the international community to provide aid to the rebuilding of the Yezidi villages that have been destroyed by ISIS. The destruction, the instability and the lack of security have forced Yezidis to live in IDP camps and have prevented them from returning home.


Although there is the ongoing struggle to advance and defend the needs and rights of Yezidis, it must be recalled that survivors are individual people and have their own rights and needs. We continue to urge all actors to fairly respect Yezidi survivors of sexual violence as people, not only for their value in recounting the atrocities committed against them.


We applaud Nadia for her tireless advocacy and stand in solidarity with all Yezidi survivors of sexual violence, now and in the future.


Pari Ibrahim
Executive Director
Free Yezidi Foundation


To keep supporting the Yezidi community please visit our website or our Global Giving Page.

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Organization Information

Free Yezidi Foundation

Location: Duhok, NA - Iraq
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @free_yezidi
Project Leader:
Pari Ibrahim
Duhok, Kurdistan Region Iraq
$34,474 raised of $103,800 goal
321 donations
$69,326 to go
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