DC and Virginia Organizations with a Worldwide Islamic Aid Mission
Relief organizations work tirelessly to improve the lives of people all over the world. In the wake of ongoing human and natural disasters, relief organizations that help Middle Eastern countries face the challenge of alleviating hunger, illiteracy, diseases, and suffering in areas where “normal life” has stopped to a halt. A number of these organizations operate in Virginia and Washington DC. Read on to learn more about the people they serve, their mission statements, and some famous faces backing the cause.
Islamic Relief USA, based in Alexandria, Virginia, is the largest Muslim charity in America. Founded in 1993, their first relief campaign was during the Bosnian war. Today this nonprofit relief and development group operates across the country as well as in over 50 nations worldwide. IRUSA donors currently sponsor more than 20,000 orphans, in addition to providing emergency relief services, women’s programs, water and sanitation, and aid for refugees. Their positive global impact cannot be understated. Former President Bill Clinton has participated in IRUSA efforts, as well as numerous Pakistani celebrities.
The HALO Trust is another DC-based non-profit organization that strives to ensure the safety and well-being of citizens from Middle Eastern countries. Focusing on landmine clearance, weapons and ammunition management, and mine risk education, the organization was founded in response to the war in Afghanistan. Seeing that war debris was preventing the return of thousands of refugees to their homes (as well as injuring and killing thousands of civilians) the group began work immediately following the departure of the Soviet Union in 1988. Many celebrities have used their fame to publicize the work of the HALO Trust, including the late Princess Diana and movie stars Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie.
Muslim Aid America is an international organization based in Springfield, VA. Focusing on nations in need with large Muslim populations, they’ve carried out sanitation, education, construction, healthcare, economic empowerment, and development projects in over 70 countries. Their work takes a “holistic” approach to aid in implementing skills-training and income-generating initiatives that can be carried on in communities to ensure long-term success. With recent support from celebrities like Richard Branson, Kofi Annan and the wife of Nelson Mandela, Graça Machel, Muslim Aid continues to lead the way in eliminating poverty for people everywhere.
Organizations like these raise funds for desperately-needed aid projects that truly change lives. While they may be headquartered in DC and Virginia, their impact is felt all over the world.