Recovery + Resilience Fund







To secure our ability to deliver life-saving services and react to the changing landscape of humanitarian assistance, NEF has launched the Recovery and Resilience Fund. The Recovery and Resilience Fund will strengthen and support our ability to help more people recover today and build resilience for tomorrow.


We believe that lifting people out of poverty starts with an opportunity. This means helping vulnerable communities in desperate circumstance access the tools and resources they need to earn an income, accumulate savings, and reclaim and rebuild their lives with dignity.

Ongoing violence, displacement, natural disasters, economic and gender inequality, and unemployment have left millions in need of humanitarian assistance across the Middle East and Africa. We are here to do something about it.

We don’t just deliver aid, we work with the local community to design and implement innovative solutions to help people improve their livelihoods, lift themselves out of poverty, and develop their economies.




To make a lasting impact and be a pioneer in building resilient and thriving communities, we not only need to address the immediate, pressing needs facing at-risk communities today, but also look ahead to make sure they are equipped to face the challenges tomorrow might bring. We do this by:





2015_October_Mali_30The impact you will make by investing in the Recovery and Resilience Fund is multi-faceted and cross-cutting — building on our ability to reach more people in need, ensure the sustainability of our projects, and share lessons learned.

The result?

  • A marked and positive change in the quantity and quality of programming being delivered

  • Innovative and adaptive approaches that respond to the changing needs on the ground

  • More robust monitoring, evaluation, and learning

  • In-depth profiles of the people and communities we serve
  • A healthier organization, securing NEF’s ability to deliver life-saving programming for years to come




For over 100 years the Near East Foundation has pioneered innovative solutions to social and economic development challenges impacting communities in the Middle East and Africa. By investing in us, you are investing in an organization that has the accumulated knowledge of decades of experience coupled with a team focused on innovative and forward-thinking solutions to development and humanitarian assistance.







2017 Impact Report


2018-03-12 07.31.48

Impact Report



With your support, NEF is building knowledge, strengthening voices, and creating economic opportunity for those who need it most



Letter from the President

To Our Supporters:

Last year, I had the opportunity to travel extensively to visit with people whose lives have been impacted by NEF. I listened to their unique dreams and ambitions for their futures, many of which have been derailed by war, oppression, climate extremes and other obstacles most of us cannot fathom. However, because of your support, we’ve been able to help them develop the skills and access the tools they need to improve their lives while preserving their dignity and most importantly, their hope.

Recently, in Darfur’s Nuba Mountains, I was overwhelmed and uplifted to see firsthand the depth of need and the impact of NEF’s work in some of the most isolated, war-torn communities imaginable. Simple yet effective interventions such as new wells, pumps, water storage, and basic latrines are saving countless lives and improving the quality of life for so many. NEF’s work in Darfur which is made possible because of donors like you, exemplifies our ability to mobilize communities to address their most basic needs in the midst and in the wake of crisis.

While encouraged by the progress we are making, I know that our work is far from done. In 2018, NEF will continue to help people develop skills and access resources to rebuild their lives. We cannot do it alone. To increase our ability to independently deliver responsive services in the changing landscape of humanitarian assistance, we have launched a Recovery and Resilience Fund. With your support we can create a long-term and flexible foundation to deliver life-saving programs and life-affirming assistance. It is my hope that the impact demonstrated in this report once again proves NEF to be an effective and worthy partner for your own efforts to make a positive change in the world.

With sincere gratitude,
Charles Benjamin

Near East Foundation

The Near East Foundation helps build more sustainable, prosperous, and inclusive communities in the Middle East and Africa through education, community organizing, and economic development.

We Work Where the World Needs Us Most

  • Armenia

  • Jordan

  • Lebanon

  • Mali

  • Morocco

  • Palestine

  • Senegal

  • Sudan

  • Syria



Artboard 1-100
To learn more about how you can make your impact, contact Director of Donor Engagement, Andrea Crowley,, (315) 428-8670.



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Our vision is to help people and communities move beyond survival by providing them with resources to achieve a better future. Here’s how

  • Building Economic and Social Resilience through Sustainable Livelihoods
    NEF promotes the economic independence and social resilience of vulnerable populations with a focus on women, refugees, and youth through entrepreneurship, microfinance, and peer networks that provide business mentoring and social support.
  • Improving Food Security through Natural Resource Management
    NEF supports smallholder farmers and other natural resource-dependent populations through initiatives that improve food security, increase income, and facilitate adaptation in order to develop local capacity and infrastructure that ensures communities have tools necessary to manage agricultural and natural resources sustainably in the long-term.
  • Peacebuilding Through Economic Development
    NEF implements highly effective initiatives that help reduce poverty and promote sustainable economic development in conflict and post-conflict areas. Focusing on core livelihood issues, NEF helps populations find mutual interests and benefit through economic cooperation.


DSC_0186In 2017, NEF directly
benefited the lives of
over 1,600,000 people. 





people participated in peacebuilding activities

youth train flip@2x


youth participated in activities on life skills, financial literacy, and positive coping strategies



businesses launched or expanded



people trained in financial literacy, business management, and vocational trades



people are more resilient to climate change



people have benefitted from improved access to safe water

Investing in Community Resilience

In the unpredictable environment of the Sahel, Malian and Senegalese communities are facing increasingly critical challenges due to recurring climate extremes—including prolonged droughts and devastating flooding. The negative impacts on crops and livestock have left entire communities struggling to recover. In 2017, NEF and its partners continued to increase food security and economic growth in the region through locally-led interventions. These include establishing cereal banks and water basins for grain and water storage, building wells, improving irrigation systems, planting water efficient crops, and teaching techniques for soil and water conservation. By linking communities most in need with locally-controlled investment funds, NEF is helping to embed inclusive planning and finance mechanisms into local and national government.


“Our village has been here for 72 years, and we have always had to walk to access water. Now we have easy access to it right in our village.”

-Arama, Sama Village Chief



Sama Village Chief, Garçon Arama, needed sustainable solutions to address the harsh conditions his people were facing due to the lack of an adequate water source in the village. To gather water needed for their crops, livestock, and homes, villagers­—often women and children—had to embark on a long and dangerous journey daily to the nearest water source miles away. To make matters worse, the time spent gathering water was time spent away from tending to crops, gardens, and livestock­—worsening the conditions and livelihoods of the people of Sama.

To address the situation, NEF worked with the community to install a natural water collection basin with a filter system that flows into secondary basins for watering crops and livestock as well as to a public standpipe for drinking water. Because the whole community was committed to this investment, the peoople of Sama are now safer, healthier, and generating more food and income through gardening and healthy livestock.

Photo Credit: IED Afrique, Lancelot Soumelong Ehode

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people in Mali and Senegal are more food secure, thanks to your support.


Restoring Livelihoods in Times of Crisis


Over 13 million people are now displaced from their homes due to the ongoing war in Syria, including over 5 million displaced outside of Syria in neighboring countries. In 2017, NEF responded to the growing needs of families who have been affected by this ongoing crisis in Jordan and Lebanon. For Syrian and Iraqi refugees, the struggle to gain their footing and rebuild their life begins the minute they enter their host country and continues for many years after. It is in this complex landscape that NEF is working to provide both vulnerable host community families and refugee families with safe and sustainable opportunities to adapt, recover, and earn an income in order to achieve economic stability.


Over three-quarters of Syrian refugees in Lebanon now live on less than $4 per day, and nearly 90% of refugee households are in debt.


DSC_0447 (1) copyIMAN, LEBANON

Like so many Syrian families whose homes have been destroyed, Iman and her husband, Ahmed, were forced to leave their home in Syria and flee to Lebanon with their four children. Their fifth child, a beautiful little girl named Joumana, was born in the informal settlement where they now reside. It is the only life she has ever known.

Iman and Ahmed found themselves in a country they did not know, reeling from the trauma of watching their home become a war zone, racking up debt, and relying solely on humanitarian assistance to care for their family. Neither could find work, Ahmed was badly injured due to enduring shrapnel in his leg from a bomb, and Iman had severe back problems that temporarily disabled her mobility.

To help Iman and her family get back on their feet, NEF provided her with business development training and a small start-up grant to open a falafel stand, which she and her husband now run together. This small kiosk within the settlement community has become a hub for more than just food but also of friendship, laughter, and healing.

Iman and Ahmed are now financially stable. Since starting their stand, they have paid down their debt and are working to save in order to expand their business. They are able to provide for their children who Iman says are, “smiling for the first time in a long time. They have hope.”



women in Lebanon and Jordan received business development training, thanks to your support.


Building Brighter Futures


NEF works with young people whose options are limited by lack of schooling, high unemployment rates, lack of credit, and in some cases refugee status. In Morocco, where young people account for 44 percent of the working age population, over half are out of school and out of work. Entrepreneurship is rarely encouraged, and risks are high for those that pursue their own businesses. The result is unemployed and disenfranchised youth who feel that the system has let them down. To address this, NEF has been working to foster a spirit of entrepreneurship among Moroccan youth, providing training, coaching, and mentoring, creating support networks, and awarding grants to youth with viable business plans.


“The project has had a big impact on me, not just financially, but also on my family.”

-Jalal, Morocco



Only a few years ago, Jalal was a young man selling his art to tourists and making barely enough to get by. After getting married and the arrival of his first child, he knew that he had to make something more of his talents. He met with NEF’s Empowering Youth Through Entrepreneurship project staff and says, “That was the meeting that changed my life.”

Like many young people in Morocco, Jalal did not know how to start his own business, especially in the non-traditional field of metal art sculpture. He had no money to invest and needed guidance on how to manage a small business. With training, coaching, connection to business networks, and a grant through NEF and its partners, Jalal now runs a successful shop where he produces and sells his art. He has been invited to display his work at regional and national exhibitions.

For Jalal and many others, the opportunity to start a business and build a future is also cultivating young leaders in Morocco. Sharing that the project inspired him to become an activist for youth causes, Jalal now leads a local entrepreneurship association and is an active member of an equal opportunity advocacy organization.

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youth have been reached by activities that support the spirit of entrepreneurship, thanks to your support.


Turning Empowerment into Progress

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In dire times, women in rural Sudan are looked to as a source of hope and resilience, within the community. Despite this, their efforts to contribute financially are not prioritized or supported. This leaves them struggling to earn a steady income and to provide food for their families. While women make up the majority of those working in the non-wood forest product sector in Sudan, their lack of access, knowledge, and formal organization has meant they receive far less than the market price for their products. By providing training on new techniques for production and harvesting, NEF not only helps women increase their income but also avoid degradation of natural resources. Progress for women is leading to progress for entire communities, emphasizing the crucial role women play in local economies.


In Sudan, women make up 72% of those involved with non-wood forest products but earn 80% less than men in the sector.



Fatima is the chairperson of her village’s women’s association. “I realized that the only economic resource exclusively under the control of women in the village was non-wood forest products,” says Fatima. These include gum arabic, desert dates, honey, sider, baobab, and other local fruits. She added, “I thought that, if the women of my village managed to unite, they could increase their income and gain respect from their husbands and other men.”

NEF has helped Fatima and the women’s association upgrade their non-wood forest products through screening, sorting, improving storage and packing, and taking measures to prevent insect infestations. Along with formal packaging and branding, these measures have resulted in a higher price for their goods. By assisting the association to establish improved linkages with wholesalers, NEF has given them access to a wider market to sell their produce.

“Today, every woman from the association says they derive substantial revenues from it,” explains Fatima. She has also seen attitudes and behaviors related to deforestation change. Moreover, the men in her village support the association by providing additional areas for planting. The village chief has said, “The future of the community is now in the hands of the women.” 



people have benefited from the activities of 13 women’s associations established,
thanks to your support.


Building Peace Through Partnerships

Conflict is a significant cause of poverty in many of the communities where NEF works. Whether it is active warfare or competition over resources and land, the consequences can be devastating and recovery can take years. From Sudan to Palestine, where conflict can flare up at a moments notice, NEF continues to promote dialogue and reconciliation among groups in conflict by presenting opportunities for shared economic benefit.

To establish an environment that promotes peace, NEF identifies opportunities for interaction between opposing groups that focus on common concerns and mutual benefits. NEF facilitates this type of grassroots economic cooperation through value chain development, collaborative natural resource management, and economic reintegration of internally displaced people.


“I saw this as a real opportunity to make may dream comes true”

-Sulaiman, Palestine



Sulaiman, a Palestinian husband and father, worked for years on various farms in the Jordan Valley where he was raised. “I didn’t have access to the knowledge or resources to do what I actually wanted to do when I finished school,” he says. His dream was to create and run his own agribusiness.

In the West Bank, NEF works with young Palestinian and Israeli women and men to start joint cross-border agricultural businesses. The aim is to provide opportunities for market expansion, knowledge sharing, and ultimately, mutual understanding between the two groups.

“I saw this as a real opportunity to make my dream come true,” says Sulaiman. Despite skepticism from friends and family, he decided to participate in NEF’s cross-border business development training inside Israel.

There, he met a young Israeli farmer named Walid who also wanted to launch his own agribusiness. Sulaiman and Walid joined forces to invest in a date processing plant in the West Bank with plans to access markets in both Israel and Palestine. By the end of the first training, Sulaiman felt he had benefited greatly saying, “I learned what I needed to start my business.”

Together, Sulaiman and Walid submitted a business plan, which was approved and selected to receive a start-up grant. They used the grant to build a drying facility, a warehouse, and to purchase equipment. When Sulaiman’s friends and family come to visit the business, he describes the pride he feels, saying, “they can’t hide their admiration for what we have built together.”



cross-border businesses have launched, thanks to your support.


A Trusted Vehicle for you Philanthropy for over 100 Years

NEF’s programs achieve maximum impact with low overhead costs and the highest efficiency in international economic development.

NEF’s commitment to accountability and transparency have earned it a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator, America’s largest independent charity evaluator.

In 2017, NEF was recognized as a vetted member of the GlobalGiving community for being a trusted partner and change-maker in the world.

NEF is an accredited member of the Better Business Bureau meeting the highest standards for ethics and accountability to ensure confident charitable giving.









Financial Summary

FINANCIAL REPORT—FISCAL YEAR 2017 (July 2016 – June 2017)


Statement of Financial Position at June 30, 2017


Cash and Equivalents 2,641,258
Grants and Contracts Receivable 541,675
Accounts and Loans Receivable 1,434,511
Investments (at fair value) 5,480,311
Prepaid Expenses 52,796                
Property and Equipment (net) 139,497
 Total $10,290,048


Accounts Payable & Accrued Expenses 925,334
Deferred Revenue 3,260,000               
 Total Net Assets $4,185,334
Unrestricted 2,455,140
Temporarily Restricted 37,785  
Permanently Restricted 3,611,789
 Total Net Assets $6,104,714 
 Total                               $10,290,048


Statement of Activities Year ended June 30, 2017


Contributions 857,068
Government 12,994,961
Private Grants 226,171
In Kind Contributions 201,260
Investment Income 516,882
Other Income 404,975
 Total $15,201,317


Program Services 13,921,393
Management and General 719,275
Fundraising 147,752
Non Operating Expenses 231,793
 Net Surplus/(Deficit) $181,104


NEF Board of Directors


  • Robert J. Solomon, Chairman
  • Johnson Garrett, Vice Chairman
  • Haig Mardikian, Secretary
  • Matthew Quigley, Treasurer
  • Charles Benjamin, Ph.D., President
  • Carol B. Aslanian
  • Charles Bird
  • Nina Bogosian Quigley
  • Mehrzad Boroujerdi, Ph.D.
  • Randa El-Sayed Haffar
  • Mona Eraiba
  • Alexander S. Ghiso
  • Jeff Habib
  • Yezan Haddadin
  • Linda K. Jacobs, Ph.D.
  • Shant Mardirossian
  • Amr Nosseir
  • William Sullivan


  • Anthony R. Williams, Chairman
  • Anthony G. Williams
  • Robert Brown
  • Linda K. Jacobs, Ph.D.
  • Johnson Garrett


  • John Kerr, Ph.D.
  • John McPeak, Ph.D.
  • Thomas Mullins
  • Juliet Sorensen, J.D.
  • Michaela Walsh


  • Shahnaz Batmanghelidj
  • Amir Farman-Farma
  • John Goelet
  • John Grammer
  • Ronald Miller
  • David Mize
  • Richard Robarts (in Memoriam)
  • Anthony Williams
  • Tarek Younes


  • H.E. Andre Azoulay
  • Ian Bremmer
  • Ambassador Edward P. Djerejian
  • Vartan Gregorian, Ph.D.
  • Ambassador Richard W. Murphy
  • Her Majesty Queen Noor of Jordan
  • James B. Steinberg
  • Ambassador Frank G. Wisner

Institutional Funders

  • Big Lottery Fund
  • Bogosian Quigley Foundation
  • Cherie Blair Foundation
  • City and Guilds Group
  • Comic Relief UK
  • Dodge Foundation
  • European Union
  • Global Giving
  • Government of the Netherlands
  • Oak Foundation
  • RAIN Foundation
  • Rangoonwala Foundation
  • Trafigura Foundation
  • U.K. Department of International Development
  • U.N. Development Program
  • US Agency for International Development (USAID)
  • USAID Office of Food for Peace
  • USAID Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance
  • U.S. Department of State Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration
  • U.S. Middle East Partnership Initiative
  • World Bank/CIM (CARE Maroc)Partners


  • Al-Farooq Charitable Society for Orphans
  • al Hadatha Association
  • Al Qadesyeh Female Youth Center
  • alAmana Microfinance
  • Arcenciel
  • Association d’Appui de Developpment Integre
  • Buisra Youth Center
  • Ein Al-Bida Female Youth Center
  • Galilee International Management Institute
  • Gegharkunik Chamber of Commerce/Industry
  • Gharandal Youth Center
  • Halima Association for Women
  • Hand in Hand for Development and Peace, Sudan
  • Innovations Environnement Développement Afrique
  • International Institute for Environment and Development
  • Jordanian Ministry for Youth
  • Jordanian National Forum for Women
  • Majales El Kheir for Peace and Development
  • Org. for Voluntary Humanitarian Assistance Program
  • Palestinian Center for Agriculture Research and Dev.
  • Peres Center for Peace
  • Qawafel Al Khair
  • Réseau Marocain de l’Economie Sociale et Solidaire
  • Sahab Society for Social Development
  • Sudanese Organization for Humanitarian Aid
  • Sudanese Red Crescent Society
  • Syracuse University
  • Tafila Female Youth Center
  • Tichka Association
  • Women’s Support Centre (Armenia)
  • Working Women Society
  • Youth Society for Self-Development

Thank you to the community of generous donors that allow NEF to make our mark on the world.

This year we received gifts from nearly 400 people and foundations from all walks of life, a wide array of ethnic and religious backgrounds, and far reachng geographies. We are grateful for each and every donation recieved and hope that you will continue to support NEF long into the future.


Thank You to Our Donors

$50,000 and above

  • Linda K. Jacobs
  • Matthew Quigley and Nina Bogosian


  • Armenian Assembly of America, Inc.
  • Armenian General Benevolent Union
  • Carol B. Aslanian
  • Cleveland H. Dodge Foundation, Inc.
  • Elmer & Mamdouha Bobst Foundation
  • Mona Eraiba
  • Alexander and Luz Maria Ghiso
  • Global Giving Foundation
  • Jeff Habib and Jessica Lowrey
  • Yezan and May Haddadin
  • Haig and Connie Mardikian
  • Shant and Christine Mardirossian
  • Abe and Mary Jo Moses (in Memorium)
  • Amr Nosseir and Mary Gustafson
  • Robert and Nancy Solomon


  • Karen Bedrosian-Richardson
  • Charles and Tracy Bird
  • William and Lauren Burke
  • Russell and Judy Carson
  • Columbia University Armenian Center
  • Dadourian Foundation (United Armenian Charities)
  • Wesley and Susan Hayden
  • Ronald and Susan Miller
  • Geoffrey A. Thompson
  • Tarek and Samantha Younes


  • Mary Ellen Abdella
  • Anita Anserian
  • Armenian Missionary Association of America, Inc
  • Ara Astourian
  • Robert Avakian
  • Stephen and Laura Avakian
  • Bagdig and Ani Baghdassarian
  • Charles Benjamin and Jennifer Abdella
  • Michael Brody
  • Martin and Aviva Budd
  • Grace Bulkeley
  • Thomas and Carolyn Cassilly
  • Sona I. Degann
  • Mark Rutherford and Melissa Dodge
  • Ahmad El-Hindi
  • Anthony and Elizabeth Enders
  • Stephen Ferrari
  • Nazareth and Nila Festekjian
  • James Fleming
  • Herbert and Claire Floyd
  • Stephanie Gamble
  • Arnold and Dianne Gazarian
  • Golden State Bank
  • Dr. Vartan Gregorian
  • Iago Lowe Hale
  • Susanne Hand and David Kinsey
  • Allan and Michelle Hoover
  • Souren A. Israelyan
  • Diron Jebejian and Andrea Montalbano
  • Herant and Stina Katchadourian
  • Ann Zwicker Kerr
  • John Kerr and Kimberly Rae Chung
  • Arman and Taline Kuyumjian
  • Richard and Barbara Boyajian Lacy
  • Richard and Leora Linhart
  • Jacob Loomis
  • Peter and Jessie Maeck
  • Melissa Hyman and Andrew Milstein
  • Diana and Charles Mkhitarian
  • Dennis and Susan Mooradian
  • Robert and Susan Morgenthau
  • Karim Mostafa
  • Julia Norman and Thomas Mullins
  • Mark Nappi
  • Samuel S. Rea
  • Richard and Dee Robarts
  • Alexander Robarts and Miran Yoon-Robarts
  • Carol Saunders
  • Gillian Sorensen
  • Stephen Philibosian Foundation
  • Harold and Louise Talbot
  • The Armenian Prelacy
  • The Fullgraf Foundation
  • The Gamble Foundation
  • The Greene-Milstein Family Foundation
  • Ascensina Tookmanian
  • Edward and Catherine Topham
  • Kevork and Pamela Toroyan
  • Jeanette Wagner
  • Eric Widmer and Meera Viswanathan
  • The Honorable Frank G. Wisner
  • Mohamed S. Younes


Up to $499

  • Abbey of Our Lady of the Holy Trinity
  • Charles and Jeanine Adanalian
  • Ignatius Agnello
  • Mari Kirkor Agopian
  • Constantinos Agouridis
  • Adrienne Alexanian
  • Ara Apelian
  • Rana Arabi
  • Alice Arapshian
  • Arpine Aroyan
  • Victoria Ashton
  • Edward and Eleonore Aslanian
  • Gohar Atamian
  • Gennaro and Marilyn Avolio
  • Vahram Aynilian
  • Marie and Migirdich Azadian
  • Karine Azizyan
  • Arthur and Susan Aznavorian
  • Pauline Babikian
  • Susan P. Bachelder
  • Kelley Badishkanian
  • Arsho Baghsarian
  • Anny Bakalian
  • Jamie Baldwin
  • Tiffany Baldwin
  • Magda G. Baligh
  • Ron Street and Carmen Bambach
  • Susan V. Barba
  • Janine Barikian
  • Pauline and Armen Barooshian
  • Raphael Barsamian
  • Arman and Maria Bedonian
  • Lucy Berkowitz
  • Catherine Bertini
  • Nvair Kadian Beylerian
  • Samuel and Nancy Billard
  • David M. Bloch
  • Michael Bobelian
  • Barbara Boghosian
  • Doris Boghosian
  • Edward Boladian
  • Jane Bollinger
  • Andrew Bonanno
  • Alan Bozian
  • Farrell Brickhouse and Beverly Peterson
  • Wyatt Brothers
  • George and Catherine Browning
  • Marion Browning
  • Marilyn Isler Brunger
  • Joanna and Mike Buboltz
  • Peter Buchanan-Smith
  • Justin R. Burruto
  • Arevig Caprielian
  • Sharon A. Chekijian
  • Larry Cohn
  • Community Church of East Williston
  • Mary Ellen Connell
  • Shannon Connelly
  • Steve and Elizabeth Cox
  • Stephen Craxton
  • Robert and Lorraine Damerjian
  • Suzy Davidkhanian
  • Susan Schaefer Davis
  • Dimitra DeFotis
  • Papken and Clair Der Torossian
  • Virginia Deranian
  • Peter DiCola
  • Marguerite Dilimetin
  • The Honorable Edward P. Djerejian
  • Cornelia Dodge
  • Edward S. Dorian
  • John Doumanian
  • Heratch O. Doumanian
  • Anthony Draye
  • George and Renee Dunham
  • Dr. and Mrs. George Dermksian
  • Erin Eckert
  • Marjorie Egarian and James Appleton
  • Kathleen Eisele
  • Michelle Ekizian
  • Lorre Eng
  • Sukru Saman and Iris Erguder
  • Sandra Eskin
  • Daniel Evans
  • Ramsey and Michelle Farah
  • Zachary Farrar
  • GJ Fass
  • Keith and Margaret Ferguson
  • Debra Ferman
  • First Congregational Church of Branford
  • Eva Kechejian Floyd
  • First Congregational Church of Branford
  • Eva Kechejian Floyd
  • Carol Foley
  • Angela W. Fower
  • Donna A. Friedman
  • Natalie Gabrelian
  • Carmen Gaddini
  • Sergio and Lee Galvis
  • Nicholas Garuccio
  • Rita Gehrenbeck and Nancy Gehrenbeck-Miller
  • Alison A. Geist
  • Hampartsum and Marie Ghazarossian
  • Antreas E. Ghazarossian
  • Halina Gosniowski
  • Sam and Sarah Gousen
  • Joseph L. Grabill
  • Joel and Wendy Greenberg
  • Sallie L. Greenfield
  • William and Jean Griswold
  • Helen Gugel
  • Carmen and Edward Gulbenkian
  • Mazen Haddad
  • Arlene Hajinlian
  • Michael and Mary Halloran
  • Ms. Susanne Hand and Mr. David Kinsey
  • Yusuf Hannun and Lina Obeid
  • Sona Haratunian
  • Nareg and Anahit Hartounian
  • Lawrence Haslbauer
  • Zabel Hatem
  • George H. Hauser Jr.
  • Annette Hayrapetian
  • Kim Hekimian
  • Robert J. Helander
  • Hariklia Heristanidis
  • Margaret Herman
  • Jean Herskovits
  • Charles and Kathleen Hinkaty
  • Seth H. Hollander
  • Margaret Hoover and John Avlon
  • Greg Hoover
  • Miriam Horn
  • Lois and Gill Houghton
  • Linda Hugle
  • Kerry Ikone
  • Margaret Jessup
  • Marina Jitechian
  • Bob Johns
  • Sandra Jonke
  • Sheri Jordan
  • Therese Joyce
  • Stephen Judge
  • Velma Kahn
  • Mary Kalemkerian
  • Lucine Karjian
  • Lynne A. Kassabian
  • Adrine Katchadurian
  • Richard Kazanjian
  • Berj Kazanjian
  • Claire Kedeshian
  • Leo Keoshian
  • Pearl Khachadoorian
  • Sofiya Khachatryan
  • Gary and Ani Khachian
  • Sana Khan
  • James J. Killerlane
  • Sung Hee Kim
  • Margaret Kinne
  • Tania Kleckner
  • Hagop and Eranica Kouyoumdjian
  • Louis Kriesberg
  • Robert and Joan Kroll
  • Weldon and Patricia Kruger
  • Derek Kruizenga
  • Arthur Kubikian
  • James F. Lawrence
  • Joyce Linde
  • Mr. Gary Livent
  • John Lysohir
  • Joseph and Jeanne Malikian
  • Stephen and Leslie Malott
  • Garcia Mangassarian
  • Kathryn Manuelian
  • Shiraz Mardirossian and Stefne Lynch
  • Annie Mardirossian
  • Hovhanes Mardirossian
  • Haig and Melanie Mardirossian
  • Vahe Mardirossian
  • Malvina Mardirosyan
  • Susan Markarian
  • Lise Martin
  • Artur Martirosyan
  • Mark Mason
  • Mr. Harry and Janice Mazadoorian
  • Brian Mazmanian
  • Merze Mazmanian
  • Alicia McElhone
  • Dikran Meguerditchian
  • David Melian
  • Asieh Melikian
  • Vialeta Melikyan
  • Barbara Merguerian
  • Harry and Juliette Milian
  • Brian and Nuria Miller
  • Eric and Mary Miller
  • Keith and Ashley Miller
  • Karen Minasian
  • Lucine Minassian
  • Anoush Miridjanian
  • David Mkrtchian
  • Sato Moughalian
  • Christine Nagorski
  • Sebouh and Michelle Nahabedian
  • Sarah Najarian
  • Artemis Nazarian
  • Linda Munguia Nease
  • Deanna Neiers
  • Sarkis and Adriana Nercessian
  • Sarkis and Adriana Nercessian
  • Jennifer Nersesian
  • Marie Nevins
  • Phillip and Sonia Newmark
  • Alexandra M. Nichols
  • Robert Nigro
  • Rosalind Ocampo
  • Dan and Jeanne Olson
  • Nini Ordoubadi
  • Arsine and Vahe Oshagan
  • Mr. and Mrs. Victor Oundjian
  • George and Nelly Oundjian
  • Dawn Papalian
  • Dennis and Mary Papazian
  • Mary and Dorothy Papazian
  • Harry Parsekian
  • Noubar Pechdimaljian
  • Mario and Marion Pellegrino
  • Susan Penn
  • Larry Peters
  • Victor and Pearlmarie Peters
  • Grant and Lucy Petrosyan
  • Carl Pforzheimer
  • Aida and Michael Pisani
  • Holly Pittman and Gary Hatfield
  • John Poochigian
  • Reverend John Post and Gloria Post
  • James J. Povlich
  • Steven Randazzo
  • Carolyn Rapkievian
  • Marla Rice-Evans
  • Christopher Rile
  • Jean E. Roberts
  • Douglas J. Rogers
  • Susan Malfa and Jonathan Rose
  • Lisa Ruggeri and Robert Rosenberg
  • Joan Rothermel
  • David Russell
  • Robert and Linda Ruth
  • Cindy Salik
  • Stephen Sarafian and Marisa Atamian-Sarafian
  • Richard and Nora Sarajian
  • Ken Sarajian
  • Nadine Sarkissian
  • James and Betty Schmitt
  • Aram and Hasma Serverian
  • Troy and Annie Setrakian
  • Lara Setrakian
  • Robert and Silva Setrakian
  • Armen and Brenda Shahinian
  • Kristin and Brendan Sheehan
  • Elizabeth Sheehan
  • Mary-Ann Sievert
  • Mackenzie Singh
  • Cynthia E. Smith
  • Alan Sokolow
  • Lisa Stepanian
  • Zaven and Gladys Tachdjian
  • Harold Takooshian
  • Cassandra Tavukciyan
  • Thomas Taylor
  • Christine Tchorbajian
  • Sarah Teale
  • Barbara Tellalian
  • Anahit Ter-Stepanian
  • Ms. Anoush Terjanian
  • Nanor Terjanian
  • Serop J. Terterian
  • Robert W. Thabit
  • Sosi Toomajanian
  • Judy M. Torrison
  • Amelia Trail
  • Robert and Sona Viola
  • Magdalini Vonderlinden
  • Michaela Walsh
  • Louis J. Wassermann
  • Mr. and Mrs. Lawrence Whartenby
  • Roger and Susan Whitaker
  • Carolyn M. Wilhelm
  • Amy Williamson
  • Kenneth S. Winer
  • Jim Wright
  • Christine Yackel
  • Migirdic and Susan Yigitkurt
  • Malcolm and Cheryl Ann Young
  • John and Katherine Yurista
  • Silva Zadourian
  • Charlene Zartarian
  • Helene Zindarsian


A Special Thank You

A special thank you to Syracuse University for enabling NEF to draw upon the talent and creative energy of the academic community to help address critical challenges while training a new generation of leaders who will guide the future of social and economic development worldwide.

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NEF Remembers Chuck Robarts

On March 25, 2018, NEF said goodbye to Richard Robarts, a revered leader of the Near East Foundation for 22 years whose philosophies and impacts are still very much present at NEF today.

At his memorial service on April 28 in Old Greenwich, CT, current NEF President, Charles Benjamin, was honored to deliver the eulogy to Chuck’s family and friends gathered to celebrate his meaningful life and legacy. In doing so, he explained the influence that Chuck had as a mentor to him and so many others, saying, “Chuck had an incredible way of working with people. He made us feel that anything was possible and no idea was too small. While teaching and mentoring us, he encouraged us to grow into our own – making us believe that we could accomplish anything. Dreaming big was something Chuck excelled in, especially when the end goal was development that had the potential to change people’s lives.”

Of his devoted wife of 54 years, Dee Robarts, and his sons Alex and Andrew, he added, “While brilliant at what he did, he led with his heart and this I think stemmed from the beautiful family he was surrounded by each day, and who he so looked forward to returning home to after each trip to the field.”

He concluded, “I now have the humbling responsibility of serving in the same role that Chuck served for 22 years, and I can only hope that all of us at NEF will go on to make him and his family proud, and ensure that the legacy that he built and the lessons he passed down live on.”

The Near East Foundation is forever grateful for Chuck’s contributions and the countless lives that he touched. With great sadness and much respect, we say goodbye to a true man of service who gave so much of his life to this organization.

Chuck Robarts2

Chuck 1993

Current NEF President, Charles Benjamin (left), and NEF President at the time, Chuck Robarts (right), standing in an irrigation ditch in Southern Morocco in 1993.

Newhouse Professor Visits NEF Lebanon to Conduct Workshop

Communications Workshop – NEF – Lebanon 208

In March, NEF held a three-day communications workshop at its Beirut, Lebanon office. Conducted by Syracuse University Professor of Visual Communications (Formally Multimedia, Photography and Design), and Director of the Newhouse Center for Global Engagement, Ken Harper, the workshop covered training on photography basics and story gathering for staff currently focused on developing refugee livelihoods. This presented a unique opportunity for NEF project staff to learn from a leading professor representing one of the top ten communications schools in the U.S., the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications.

“The challenge is equipping project implementation teams who are already at maximum capacity with project activities, with enough information to gather quality photos and meaningful stories, without totally overwhelming them,” said NEF’s Director of Communications, Kristin Sheehan. “Ken was able to achieve this and more.

After a full day of lessons in a classroom setting, the group set off to put their new knowledge into practice. The next two days were spent visiting two women who have benefitted from NEF’s work in Lebanon—both Syrian refugees who have started small businesses with NEF’s help.  Iman, Fatima, and their families welcomed the new group of amateur photographers and journalists into their homes with open arms and great patience as they conducted interviews, gathered photos, and recorded videos. 

Of the experience, Professor Harper says, “My time working with the Near East Foundation in Lebanon had a profound effect on me personally and professionally. The thoughtful respect they offered the refugee community was evident in everything they did.”

“I am proud to be affiliated with such an organization.” 


Click on the images below to view the gallery:


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A Family Unites During Hard Times: Asma’s Story



A large craft area now consumes the family room in Asma’s home. The table is cluttered with colorful fabrics, threads, candles, and patterns and drawing for new designs. Asma carefully crafts her newest creation, while her children prepare for their next trip to the local bazaar. By all accounts, Asma’s life looks happily busy and secure—but it’s been a difficult road to get to this point.

Asma grew up in the outskirts of Amman, married young, and gave birth to five children in quick succession: three boys and two girls. Life as she knew it changed dramatically when her husband unexpectedly passed away and Asma found herself entirely responsible for providing for five children. They had accumulated little to no savings and with only having a 10th-grade education Asma felt at a loss as to how she could support her family. To meet immediate needs, Asma took out a loan but found that she was only qualified to receive 200 JOD – her rent alone was 175 JOD. If her family were to safely survive their deteriorating situation, Asma knew she needed to find a way to earn a steady income.

Asma always had a special talent for creating toys for her children out of old or broken items around the house so thought why not turn this skill into an income. Asma immediately started to test her abilities—challenging herself to repurpose old items not only into toys but also into new household trinkets and accessories.

While her products improved, Asma still lacked the knowledge and guidance on how to turn her DSC_6222_editedcreations into a profitable business. After seeking help from the Ministry of Development in Jordan, Asma was referred to one of NEF’s Siraj Centers near her home and qualified to attend a business development training there.

On the first day of the training, she decided to bring some of her merchandise so she could showcase her business idea and test her products. The other women at NEF’s Siraj Center were so impressed that she actually ended up selling everything she brought that day. Asma felt encouraged by their warmth and support and felt she had finally found a place that would help her turn her life around.

With help from the training, Asma developed a formal business plan and was awarded a cash grant to help her buy the supplies she needed to improve the quality and increase the number of her products. She described NEF’s training as “the starting point of her life.” She went on to explain that through the training she was able to learn how to correctly price her items (taking into account the cost of her raw materials, time, and transportation to and from the bazaars) and deal with customers. Of equal importance to her was the sense of community she gained by being connected to such an encouraging group of women. She said that they continue to keep in touch, provide each other with support, and learn from one another.

DSC_6147_editNow remarried, Asma shares how supportive her family is of her business. Her eldest shared his pride in what his mother has accomplished saying that they have seen how hard she has worked to provide for them all these years which is why they want to support her work as much as they can. All of Asma’s children join her at each bazaar or craft festival she attends, helping her deal with customers and set up her display. Another one of her sons commented on how much he has learned about running a business from watching Asma, saying when he is old enough, he would like to take business classes like his mother took.

In the future, Asma hopes to expand by opening her own shop. She described NEF as a “shining star” that presented itself to her when she was most in need of help and went on to say, “I now am truly happy because I am financially secure and self-reliant.”

Because of the gratitude Asma feels for being able to turn her life around, she now makes time for her family to do voluntary work so they can give back and provide hope to families who are struggling.

NEF’s economic livelihoods work in Jordan is funded by the U.S. Dept. of State Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration and City & Guilds.

Why we need to focus on long-term solutions to the refugee crisis

A field update from Andrea Crowley, NEF Director of Donor Engagement

HanaIn recent weeks, we’ve heard how international support for humanitarian assistance is falling dangerously short of what is needed – leaving 200,000 refugee families who are completely reliant on cash assistance in immediate risk. Without financial support, these families are forced toward dangerous coping mechanisms including unregulated labor, begging, child marriage, and radicalization – all of which further complicate and exacerbate the ongoing crisis.

On a recent trip to Jordan, I witnessed first hand the increasing need for long-term solutions and saw why passive cash assistance is simply not enough. When visiting with refugee families and hearing their experiences, I felt the weight of what they had been through, an acceptance that they would likely be a refugee from their home country indefinitely, and their desperation for a better life for themselves and their family.

One of the women I met with, Hana, is a refugee who has been receiving cash assistance from an international agency to support herself and her children (her husband died a few years ago). While extremely grateful for the support, she expressed living in a constant state of worry and stress of what would happen when this aid ended. The money she received also wasn’t enough to cover their basic needs (rent, heating and water). Hana knew that she needed to do something to earn money and become more financially secure. That is when she sought help from one of NEF’s Siraj Centers near her home.

At any one of the four Siraj Centers we’ve established in Jordan, refugees and vulnerable Jordanians are able to access training, counseling, and critical information needed to find jobs, start businesses, improve their physical and mental well-being, and strengthen their families’ economic resilience.

After attending one of our business development workshops, Hana started catering food out of her modest kitchen where she prepares popular dishes she learned to make from her mother as a young girl. From the profit she makes taking orders from her neighbors and the local supermarket, Hana is able to bring in a sustainable source of income to support her family’s needs. With a smile on her face, Hana told me that she feels much stronger now because she is able to depend on herself and not others.

“With a smile on her face, Hana told me that she feels much stronger now because 
she is able to depend on herself and not others.”

At NEF, we believe that providing people with safe opportunities to earn an income is critical for their survival. We are working hard to help people move past their reliance on passive aid by building their resilience and autonomy so they can independently generate an income. As support for international aid fails, our work is needed now more than ever.

I urge you to share this message and consider a gift to NEF today. It is up to us, and donors like you, to help others like Hana survive on more than humanitarian aid.


Lead OOWB Farmer in Jordan Shares Lessons Learned


Fatima may seem an unlikely Jordanian agricultural leader. At only 17 years old she was married and moved from the urban center of Amman to a rural farming village in Ajloun. While she didn’t have the opportunity to pursue an education growing up in the city, she fully committed herself to learning all she could about agriculture to help manage her new family’s 34-dunum farm. “In the beginning, I faced many difficulties and challenges in my new environment; city life is so different from the simple village life that depends on agriculture,” Fatima said. “I tried to adapt to my new life and my new society.”

Now 57 and a mother of six, Fatima is a lead farmer in NEF’s Olive Oil Without Borders (OOWB) project, which expanded to Jordan in 2017. Even though she has worked exclusively in Jordan’s agricultural sector for forty years, she told NEF that she has benefitted greatly from the information in NEF’s cross-border trainings and has shared her knowledge with other Jordanian farmers.

Similar to olive farmers in Israel and the West Bank, farmers in Jordan face challenges with olive diseases, water shortages, and ensuring the production of quality crops and oil. Fatima and her family specifically face many obstacles such as a lack of updated agricultural equipment, changing climate conditions, and a general lack of support for the agricultural sector in Jordan. Through the OOWB project, Fatima and others have been able to benefit from the knowledge of other olive farmers across the region. These interactions have reaffirmed her commitment to working together with her community to overcome some of these issues and improve their olive oil production.

With her dedication to this work and to teaching others, Fatima developed a Farmer Field School on her land with the help of NEF where she shares improved techniques for olive farming.

“Now, after my participation in this project, I’m even more interested in taking care of our farm and helping farmers in my village through what I have learned.” 

From the experience, Fatima has become a leader in her community. She shared her appreciation for the opportunities OOWB has presented for her personally and professionally, saying, “I received a lot of training to develop myself and increase my knowledge about agriculture and how to improve the quantity and quality of olive oil produced on my farm. I participated in all the trainings and activities organized by the project team, acquiring many experiences and skills, and increasing my knowledge. Because of this, I also felt more confident to start passing this information on and training farmers around me.”

As one example of how the project has transformed her confidence, Fatima shared, “During one training, I was teaching farmers how to make fly traps when my husband, who was participating, tried to suggest another method that was not correct. I stuck to what I knew and proved I was correct in the practical application. Now, my husband consults me on all agricultural matters and trusts my expertise!”

OOWB, implemented by the Near East Foundation and funded by the United States Agency for International Development, works to promote long-term, large-scale collaboration in the olive sector through cross-border initiatives and trade agreements that increase income, production yields, and regional trade. These efforts have so far brought together 5,000 Jordanian, Palestinian, and Israeli farmers, mill operators, producers, and other agricultural stakeholders.

Starting over: Iman’s Story

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These days, Iman and her husband Ahmed’s days are off to a busy start with a business to run, and a family to take care of. Shortly after rising Ahmed heads to their falafel stand to start preparations for the day. The kiosk is located within the informal tented settlement in the Bekaa Valley of Lebanon, where they have resided since fleeing their home in Ghouta, Syria six years ago. Iman starts her day by tending to the children and their home. Once the kids are settled she heads to the kiosk to meet Ahmed where they get to work chopping, grinding, and preparing their homemade falafel and kabobs for the lunch rush. Iman makes the falafel, Ahmed grills the kabobs. Right now, life is manageable, peaceful, even hopeful.

This is a major departure from the chaos and uncertainty Iman and Ahmed felt after being forced to leave their home in Syria and arriving in Lebanon with their four children in 2012. Their fifth child, a beautiful little girl named Joumana, was born in the camp after they resettled. The two-room tent that they occupy is the only home she has ever known. They could not find work after they arrived. Ahmed was badly injured due to enduring shrapnel in his leg from a bomb, and Iman had severe back problems that greatly disabled her mobility. The family racked up around $1,500 in debt, a source of great stress for both Iman and Ahmed. Anything outside the bare minimum for the children was out of the question. Iman shared that the other women in the camp banded together to help her family, explaining that “they all take care of one another, it is very much like an extended family.” While comforted by their support, Iman knew they had to do something to start providing for themselves.

Over three-quarters of Syrian refugees in Lebanon now live on less than $4 per day and nearly 90% of refugee households are in debt.DSC_0333

When Iman was approached with the opportunity to join NEF’s livelihoods support program, Ahmed was skeptical. As they often do for hesitant spouses, NEF project staff invited him to sit in on the first business development training so that he could see it was legitimate and safe for his wife to attend. Even when Iman was having extreme problems with her back, and was considering discontinuing the classes, NEF’s Siraj Center team made special accommodations for transport to the classes. Iman explains that the training was very enjoyable for her. Even with the pain she was experiencing, she insisted on going because she says

“It made me feel so good to be there learning new things and relating to the other women.”

She says it raised her spirits and was a relief from the difficulties she was facing at home. She shared that she didn’t even know about the $850 project grant in the beginning—she just felt that the training and coaching was building her character, and made her feel like, “a more complete person.”  

Since starting their falafel stand, Iman and Ahmed have substantially paid down their debt. Their 13-year-old daughter, Bayan, says before the business Ahmed was often angry and stressed because of his inability to work and provide for their family but since it has been up and running, “the household is much more positive, everyone is less stressed.” In turn, Iman shared that her kids are, “smiling for the first time in a long time, they have hope.”

Beyond providing the household income, the kiosk has also helped them meet their neighbors. Iman explained that she loves getting to interact with the people in their community. The kiosk has become a hub for more than just food but also for friendship, laughter, and healing.




Preserving Resources and Peace

Local Conventions_Sudan_Comic Relief

Eissa is 80 years old and a village leader in a remote village in South Kordofan. During his life, he has seen his village experience times of peace and times of great unrest caused by competition for territory and resources. He’s witnessed the resulting displacement and suffering these conflicts have caused as well as the degradation of the surrounding land and forests. 

In Sudan, NEF facilitates reconciliation among groups in conflict through collaborative natural resource management. This starts with the establishment of negotiated agreements between two or more groups that define the ground rules for management and access to resources such as water points, grazing land, and migration corridors. Eissa had this to report after participating in these negotiations,

“This process has helped us as sheikhs and Omdas (village leaders) tremendously. It helped raise awareness about the importance of conserving our natural resources, especially the forests. It’s also helped us decrease the amount of conflict between the pastoralists and the farmers in the area. The pastoralists are more committed to their corridors and now keep away from the farmer’s fields.”

This has been especially important during the summer when the severe lack of water prompts pastoralists to set up camps in areas called Damras (temporary nomad villages) and utilize the established community’s water pasture for livestock and village schools for their children. Eissa explains how children are uniquely positioned to mitigate conflict in this situation. “Now students at schools, especially the children of pastoralists who are just passing by, are raising awareness about natural resource conservation and management which has helped avert unnecessary conflicts that might occur in the area.”

While Eissa is encouraged by the progress that he’s seen, he hopes that the workshops on how to negotiate these agreements will continue, “We still need more of the management of conflict over natural resources workshops because we think it can extend the knowledge for more nearby Damras in the area.”

Vital to NEF’s peacekeeping and natural resource management initiatives in the region are efforts to increase the role of women in public leadership and group decision-making around these matters. Ensuring that women have a voice in the peacebuilding process is key to achieving long-term changes in attitudes around the valuable contributions of women in their communities. 

Using an inclusive approach, the agreements are collaboratively established with the help of the Near East Foundation (NEF), the National Forest Cooperation (NFC), village leaders, village women’s associations, and local authorities. With funding from Comic Relief, it has been almost a year now since these conventions were put into place in three localities, all with positive impacts.

Call for 2018 summer interns!


Every year, some of the most talented students from around the world apply for an internship with the Near East Foundation (NEF). Being a small organization with a large portfolio of work, our internships offer a unique experience that allows students to immerse themselves in the many aspects of international development work.

For 100 years, NEF has worked to build more sustainable, prosperous, and inclusive communities in the Middle East and Africa through education, governance, and economic development initiatives. Working through a network of country offices and local partners, NEF currently has approximately 190 staff members and programs in nine countries: Armenia, Jordan, Lebanon, Mali, Morocco, Palestine, Senegal, Syria, and Sudan. Driven by the local needs in the areas we work, our programs provide communities in the world’s toughest places with the tools and support they need to transform their own lives.

The Near East Foundation (NEF) is offering paid or per-credit internships in its Syracuse headquarters for the 2018 summer term. Based on qualifications, the interns will be placed in one of the following departments: Program Development, Program Support/Monitoring and Evaluation, Communications, Fundraising Development, or our Historical Initiative. All open internship positions are detailed below. Summer internships will start on May 21, 2018, and run through August 17, 2018. Our internships require a commitment of 15 hours per week (maximum of 20 hours per week) during the summer term.

Applicants are encouraged to familiarize themselves with NEF’s goals and mission prior to applying by visiting, checking out our Facebook page, following us on Twitter (@NearEastFdn), and/or signing up to receive our newsletter at get-involved/. For application instructions, please see each posting below. For consideration, applicatios must be received by Friday, April 13, 2018. All applicants will be contacted with a decision on or before Monday, May 7, 2018.

Fundraising Development Intern (one position)

The Near East Foundation’s Fundraising Development team is looking for a research and reporting intern. S/he is an organized and systematic individual who can (1) research corporate and   foundation grants, individual prospects, funding pipelines, and relevant fundraising events and provide their findings in a clear, organized, and timely manner; (2) assist with data entry and reporting; (3) assist with communication and development tasks as needed including copy editing and producing original content; (4) has a working knowledge of online research and social media; (5) assist with mailing and distribution of print and online communications materials as needed. Knowledge of the international development sector is a plus. The position is open to graduate and undergraduate students.

To apply, please send a complete PDF file consisting of: (1) a one-page cover letter; (2) a one-page resume; (3) a list of 3 references to

Media Intern – Design and Communication (one position)

The Near East Foundation’s Communications team is looking for a Design and Communications intern. S/he is a dynamic, creative, and organized individual who supports core marketing and communications functions by designing web based and print marketing materials as well as written content when needed. S/he is attentive to details and willing to learn while engaging and interacting with confidence with office staff at Headquarters and overseas.

The selected intern is open to a graduate student or a rising university senior in a related field with an excellent track record.  S/he has the ability to (1) assist with design and distribution of print and digital communications materials using Adobe Creative Suite; (2) support all social media efforts; (3) assist with developing web content; (4) Log and organize NEF’s media library. Knowledge of the international development sector and fluency in French or Arabic is a plus (not required).

To apply, please send a complete file consisting of: (1) a one-page cover letter; (2) a one-page resume; (3) a list of 3 references; (4) if available, 2 to 3 examples of graphic design pieces you’ve created to

Program Development and Research Intern (two positions)

 The Program Development and Research Intern is a dynamic, organized, and a systematic individual who supports programmatic research needs by playing a key role in managing, retrieving and communicating relevant information in a timely manner. S/he is attentive to details, possesses excellent analytical skills, and discretion. S/he is willing to learn while engaging and confidently interacting with office staff at Headquarters and overseas. S/he will support the program development unit.

The selected intern is a graduate or undergraduate student in a related field with an excellent academic record. S/he has the potential to (1) perform effective and timely research to support NEF’s strategy and mission, including but not limited to supporting program development; (2) utilize accurate research methods (including properly citing sources) and creating effective reference tools and (3) support special projects and contribute to proposal writing efforts, as assigned.

The selected intern possesses (1) strong research skills and ability to effectively analyze written material for relevance, clarity, and coherence; (2) strong writing skills and editing abilities; and, (3) strong computer skills including document formatting and chart, graph and spreadsheet creation.

Firm understanding of and familiarity with Africa and the Middle East as well as language competency in French and/or Arabic are a plus. The position is open to graduate and undergraduate students.

To apply, please send a complete file consisting of: (1) cover letter (2) resume (3) official transcripts (4) two writing samples (5) a list of 3 references to:

Program Support Intern (two positions)

The Program Support Intern is a dynamic, organized, and systematic individual who supports program efforts by collecting field data, support M&E functions and writing and editing of reports.  S/he is attentive to details, possesses excellent analytical skills, time management, discretion and confidentiality. S/he is willing to learn while engaging and interact with confidence with office staff at Headquarters and overseas.

The identified intern is a graduate or undergraduate student in a related field with an excellent academic record. S/he has the potential to (1) assist staff in developing reports for diverse audiences including Donors and prospective Donors; (2) provide desk research; (3) edit documents as directed; (3) provide research support to ongoing program and (6) support special projects as assigned.

The selected Intern possesses: (1) strong research skills and ability to effectively analyze written material for relevance, clarity and coherence; (2) strong writing skills and editing abilities and (3) strong computer skills including document formatting, chart, graph and spreadsheet creation. Firm understanding of and familiarity with Africa and the Middle East as well as language competency in French and/or Arabic are a plus.

To apply, please send a complete file consisting of: (1) cover letter (2) resume (3) official transcripts, (4) two writing samples (5) a list of 3 references to:

Near East Relief Historical Society Intern (one position)

NERHS is seeking an intern who can join us for the summer internship term (June -August 2018) with the possibility to extend their internship through the academic year (August 2018 – May of 2019). Those who are  only able to begin in the fall for a 2018-2019 academic internship will still be considered and are encouraged to apply. Our internships require a commitment of 10 – 15 hours per week (ability to do closer to 15 is preferred). Applicants are encouraged to familiarize themselves with the NERHS online museum by visiting and checking out the NERHS Facebook page (

The NERHS intern will oversee the development and management of the Near East Relief Digital Museum and its corresponding Facebook presence. This will include developing new research content, inventorying and logging materials awaiting publication to the site, processing new materials and collections that are received, and sharing updates and news with NERHS constituents. Candidates should be data-driven, organized, and systematic individuals who have a passion for history, and bringing it to life through storytelling.


  • Manage the back-end of the Near East Relief Digital Museum (includes uploading and cataloging content, manage SEO, google analytics, keyword searches etc.).
  • Research Data Asset Management (DAMs) platforms for best practices to incorporate into our platform (word press).
  • Near East Relief materials appear on other sources (Library of Congress, DPLA etc.). The intern would need to find where else other NER materials exist, and embed them into the NER digital museum website.
  • Work with a web developer to add a searchable “Resources” section to to allow for the upload of books, reports, and papers in .pdf e-reader format with functionality to filter by topic.
  • Conduct primary source research on the history of Near East Relief (1915-1930) and Near East Foundation using the NEF’s archival collection.
  • Develop website content using existing historical content.
  • Manage the Near East Relief Historical Society NERHS Facebook page.

The position is open to graduate and undergraduate students. To apply please send a single pdf file consisting of: (1) a one-page cover letter; (2) a one-page resume; (3) a list of 2 references to 

Questions? Email