ORAM - ORGANIZATION FOR REFUGE ASYLUM & MIGRATION

Rating: 3.44 stars   9 reviews

Issues: Civil Rights, LGBTQ, International

Location: 39 Drumm St., 4th Floor San Francisco CA 94111 USA

Mission: ORAM’s mission is to advocate for refugees fleeing persecution based on their sexual orientation, gender identity or gender.
Target demographics: Lesbian, gay, bisexual, trangender, and intersex individuals; those fleeing sexual and gender-based violence.
Programs: Partnering with UNHCR to promote LGBTI Refugee ProtectionSan Francisco resettlement projectDirect legal assistance to LGBTI and gender-based refugeesCollaboration with other NGOs to advance understanding of the unique challenges and needs of LGBTI and gender-based refugees

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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars   Featured Review

2 people found this review helpful

ORAM is truly an amazing organization, helping gay, lesbian and transgender refugees worldwide. ORAM has managed to figure out what the real obstacles are to helping these folks, and then, developed programs to transform their lives. ORAM conducts training of refugee workers all over the world, develops advocacy campaigns to help them, and assists individuals seeking refugee protection. Our brothers and sisters are suffering in a great many countries, and ORAM is working diligently to help them - all on a minimal budget that is efficiently managed and a small group of dedicated staff.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Expand its efforts by increasing its budget

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 1 stars  

3 people found this review helpful

This organization has a great mission and some of its work helps the actual refugees they claim they are helping however, the director, Neil Grungras is a self-important man who mismanages the organization. His treatment of staff and volunteers is not only disrespectful but he takes them for granted, gets rid of them and orders them around like they are reusable. The little good intentions he has are wasted on dumping his responsibilities on volunteers like me and jetting around the world to meet with people he can name drop. He treats those who work tirelessly for him badly and he is disorganized and thoughtless when it comes to implementation of the work. He does not seem to think the careers and opinions of young adults that are beginning their career in human rights work matter, and he acts accordingly. All of this behavior is said to be more efficiently serving the larger mission, but sadly he does not realize that the way you treat staff is important and people talk. I strongly discourage interning/volunteering or working for this organization.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

No

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

None

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Badly

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

No

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

The staff is formed by the most passionate people I've met and I believe that this is the main reason for the NGO's great accomplishments. The friendly, yet professional working environment, makes the volunteers and interns contribute with great pleasure.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 4 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

I would like to show my support for the organization ORAM, which provides support (legal and otherwise) to refugees and educates groups and individuals about discrimination in countries where it is needed.

I have personally met individuals helped by ORAM, and the work of this organization is essential to the respect of human rights.

Was your donation impactful?

Likely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

ORAM is an incredible organization dedicated to saving the lives of LGBTI refugees worldwide, largely due to Executive Director Grungras's vision, dedication and leadership. I highly recommend others to donate to and support ORAM!

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

This is a great organization that works to help LGBTI refugees fleeing persecution in their home countries. I had a chance to work on publications and treatises, and also to help work on some of the legal cases being handled in the office. Great opportunity!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Hire more staff!

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 1 stars  

Amazing mission of assisting glbt people but the executive director grungas sabotages the organisation. I was an intern here and was truly truly inspired by some of the staff and volunteers, but the mismangements really hurt the organisation. Projects and publications are not planned, all deadlines are missed, and too much time is spent compensating for the bad decisions and awful judgement of the executive director. During my summer, he spent most of it jetsetting for no seeming reason or accountability. Completely out of touch but for the brief moments he is in San francisco and not in Israel or Europe, he is harrassing the staff and volunteers and interns to makeup for all the work he fails to do. I was so so frustrated with him even as an intern, so I can so understand why the staff turnover is as high as it is. Mr. Grungas is so paranoid about competition organisations that he rather not help GLBT people in need of help so that no one can help them.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

urging the board to replace Mr. Grungas as executive director. He had a good vision as founder but he does not care about the organisation or its mission anymore.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Unlikely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A little

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Badly

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

No

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Was this review helpful? 

We are genuinely sorry to hear that the reviewer did not have a good internship with us. It is true that our ED travels widely, speaking at conferences, giving trainings, and advocating with the United Nations in Geneva and elsewhere. Like many small nonprofits, the atmosphere can be busy, and we realize that this is not for everyone. We sincerely hope the author finds a more rewarding internship elsewhere.

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 4 stars  

Before interning at ORAM, I already found myself lucky to live in a country where Human Rights are not a life and death issue. ORAM opened my eyes on the persecution that millions of people experience everyday around the world based on their sexual orientation and gender identity. I worked with a professional staff advocating for this cause for many years, using their expertise to conduct research and trainings to raise the awareness of governments, international institutions and the public. I witnessed the willingness of the organization and its partners to help refugees living in precarious conditions. I also met committed and competent interns. ORAM is a key organization in its field and I am proud to have been part of it.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Likely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 1 stars  

6 people found this review helpful

The mission and purpose of this organization is much needed around the world. Unfortunately, ORAM is not equipped to achieve its mission and purpose. With such tremendous staff turnover, institutional knowledge is lacking and inefficiency prevails. Character assassinations and general paranoia by management about other organizations, incompetent staff, and incompetent contractors occur frequently. Funds and projects are mismanaged and procrastination is the norm at ORAM. I would not fund this organization until its board takes seriously the issues and liability its Executive Director creates for them and their duties to the organization.

Was your donation impactful?

Unlikely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

No

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

No

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Was this review helpful? 

We are genuinely sorry to hear that the reviewer - a former employee of ORAM - did not have a good experience with us. Sometimes there is not a good fit between employee and employer, and we hope things work out for the reviewer at a different organization.

Review from Guidestar