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2018 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Karam Foundation NFP

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Philanthropy, Refugees

Mission: Karam Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to building a better future for Syria. We develop Innovative Education programs for Syrian refugee youth, distribute Smart Aid to Syrian families, and fund Sustainable Development projects initiated by Syrians for Syrians. A nonprofit organization dedicated to help people help themselves, we seek to restore the dignity and quality of life for people affected by conflict by eliminating barriers to success through innovative education, entrepreneurial development, and community-driven aid.

Results: Karam Foundation is proud to be fulfilling its goals. Indication of such can be seen from following some Karam beneficiaries over time. For example, children who were previously part of the Sponsor a Syrian Refugee Family program are now growing with other programs (such as Karam Scholars, geared towards higher education). Additionally, in Reyhanli, children who were not accessing formal education prior to our intervention are not only attending classes, but also, in their free time, are taking non-formal education classes offered through Karam House. Karam Foundation’s specific accomplishments in 2017 include: -Opened Karam House: Reyhanli, and welcomed 250 Syrian refugee youth as members -Hosted first group of international mentors at Karam House -Doubled the number of families in the Sponsor a Syrian Refugee Family project -Increased the number of Karam Scholars accessing higher education -Launched the Jumpstart for Refugees project in the United States -Grew staff in the United States and in Turkey -Continued to amplify Syrian voices through 67 media mentions, including: Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, FORBES, CBS, and The Chicago Tribune

Target demographics: Displaced Syrian children and families

Direct beneficiaries per year: tens of thousands of Syrians in need, including 13,490 families, 42,973 children, 3,795 students, and more.

Geographic areas served: Syria, Turkey, Jordan, United States

Programs: Innovative Education programs for Syrian refugee youth, distributing Smart Aid to Syrian Families, and funding Sustainable Development projects initiated by Syrians for Syrians.

Community Stories

98 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

7

Donor

Rating: 5

Karam Foundation has consistently provided very necessary services to the Syrian people for the last four years, and it has done so with great transparency such that donors have confidence that their money is going where it is most needed.

1 fifireed

Donor

Rating: 5

Karam team is made of very dedicated people who will stop at nothing to help families uprooted from their hometown with nothing to look forward to. Karam helps find them shelter, clothing, food, education and many other factors to bring back some meaning to their life.
Thank you Karam for all you do.

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1

Donor

Rating: 5

Karam is doing wonderful work for Syrian refugees cause they are so dedicated and go the extra mile to come to the rescue whether it’s medical social or educational

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Wonderful nonprofit providing much needed support to the Syrian people.
I greatly admire Karam Foundatin for its performance, nice schools and professional CEO, Board members and staff. My relatives and friends in Istanbul told me very nice stories about Karam Foundation. I like Karam Foundation and trust it greatly.
Best wishes for a great expansion, successful development in their humanitarian causes.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Karam Foundation helped many refugee families in my area start their new life in the US with the right tools, education and support. The foundation ‘s help and support in building a better future for the families came just at the right time and after few months of settlement. Quickly after being introduced to Karam foundation we saw the new refugees driving cars and working at the right jobs while thinking more positive about their future after living in war for many years. What a transformation!

Donor

Rating: 5

There is no non profit helping displaced Syrians more creative and concretely helpful. They spend every dollar as if their own and in the name of directly helping people on the ground. They use technology with great innovation also to help young people prepare for this new century and to make their own impact and self reliance.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Such a trustworthy organization, love the change they are doing all over the world, providing the students with the best technologies and workshops in The Karam house is awesome , keep going Karam and keep putting a smile on thousands of families

Faisal R.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The Badet Family live not far from our house. We met the parents and the children.
15 years-old Nour Badet barely spoke English or knew anything about the US when she came as a Syrian refugee. Karam Foundation supported Nour to attend camps in Connecticut during six weeksfor two years in a row. This camp greatly helped Nour to pick up with English and learn about American culture. Karam Foundation made a big difference in the life of Nour. She is now an active straight-A girl in high school

Donor

Rating: 5

I don't know where I found the Karam Foundation a couple of years ago, but it was through purchasing their lovely olive, interesting smelling soap from Syrian plant material, that I loved so much, I bought three more for my sisters across the USA. I feel so terrible that our country is not taking a million Syrian refuges. Shame on us. The next gift I found to support the Karam school children refugees in Turkey and in Syria, was the notecards with ink drawings of great leaders, like Nelson Mandella and others I never heard of. I hope you will try their wonderful soap and imagine a world like the days of "It's a Small Small World" in which our cultural differences were a joy for all. Thank you for your donations to this truly inspiring cause. I am a white woman who knows better.

Donor

Rating: 5

After growing up in Syria, it’s amazing to find an organization that helps me connect to my roots. The work Karam Foundation does is innovative and truly helping improve the lives of so many Syrian refugees who are in dire need.

Donor

Rating: 5

Karam foundation is a great humanitarian organization that is doing an excellent work in educating young Syrian refugees. Keep up the good work and effort

Jimena L.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Karam Foundation NFP has exceed all my expectations. This organization does so many amazing things to help Syrian refugees. I am the accountant for the organization and have loved working for this amazing non-for-profit. The work that is being done to help those who need it the most is incredible. Everyday I am reminded that there are still so many children and families who need us to help them get back on their feet. I joined the team knowing that I was going to be part of an amazing cause, the cause of helping the Syrian refugees.

Donor

Rating: 5

Education, aid, and development in Syria. Non-partisan, by Syrians for Syrians. Love this year's new Karam House community center for kids! Proud to be a regular donor!

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Donor

Rating: 5

Karam Foundation has repeatedly proven themselves to be committed to the cause of helping displaced and war-torn Syrian families secure a real life. With the scholarship program, Karam has demonstrated that they go beyond just aid - but also education and ensuring Syrians have a productive and fulfilling future. I love donating to them as I see exactly where my donations go and how much it positively affects real lives.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Such a great foundation. All of the money raised goes directly to those in need. The people behind this project have their hearts in the right place.

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General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

An amazing charity that really helps people in need. Keep up the great work.

Leena Z.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The Karam Foundation is one that is truly based with character and heart. It aims to seek better opportunities both in the short and long term for generations of displaced Syrians who are fleeing war, half of whom are women and children. Not only does it help refugees but includes them in their voice and implementation; This is hard to come by in the humanitarian and development sphere. It is unique but driven with passion.

Donor

Rating: 5

Karam team is devoted to help people in real needs, with a focus missions and great time table, Karam is always there in time.

Donor

Rating: 5

An honorable foundation that helps those most in need.

Donor

Rating: 5

Karam Foundation is the most beloved American charity actively supporting Syrian refugees. Their aid work is vital and their youth programs are both creative and engaging. When supporting this organization one gets the sense that they are investing in future growth rather than simply putting bandages on wounds.

Zaina S.

Donor

Rating: 5

Karam Foudndation is helping a lot of people and kids to build their life again, all the members in this Foundation gave a lot to just make something for theses people in their future, lots of love and respect.

Board Member

Rating: 5

With great confidence I nominate Karam Foundation for Top Rated Non-Profit award. Karam Foundation was founded 10 years ago with small teams but big dreams. Today Karam serve thousands of suffering refugees with great focus on education, eliminating both child labor and teen early marriage. Karam youth programs delivered innovative technological tools to refugee teens to help them navigate the future with confidence.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

A valuable charity doing extremely important work.

Donor

Rating: 5

I donated to Karam several times. To see their growth and their outreach, how quickly their campaigns come together and also, how they touch people on the ground is both inspirational and moving. Best of Luck!

Donor

Rating: 5

Karam Foundations' work with Syrian refugees is extremely impressive. I also really appreciate their transparency regarding their funds, and their informative and responsive news regarding current events.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Rebuilding public services like the neighborhood ovens, medical supplies to hospitals, providing prosthetic limbs to children, it's all really helpful and it means a lot to many. Keep up the good work.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Karam makes helping the people of Syria a possibility for people who don't know where to begin – providing much needed medical support to field hospitals, food supplies to cut-off villages, and hope for those whose government has turned its back on them. There is no more admirable of an organization in my eyes and it deserves every bit of our support.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Karam is not an average charity. The person who founded it not only creates jobs in the community but went to Syria every once in a while to personally assist in the camps, armed with generous donations and clothing.
A great organization

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Truly making a difference in people's lives and on the ground.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

I love the story telling part of the foundation. I think the content used to build up a story and a case for donating is very important. As a donor I want to be continuously updated and also have some discretion on how my donation is being spent. I think Karam balances this approach, while being able to scale up their fund raising efforts.

Donor

Rating: 5

Karam Foundation is nothing less than perfection when choosing an organization to support. Their focus on providing people with the tools they need to continue to move forward is so important. When donating to Karam, I know that my donations will go to where Syrians need it most.

1

Donor

Rating: 2

I know this organization does important work, and I am grateful for it. However, I made a donation over the holidays in honor of a friend of mine, and despite numerous requests, she has not been notified of this gift. I am repeatedly assured that she has been notified, and I ask for a copy of the acknowledgement letter. Nothing arrives. Now they have stopped answering my emails ('m sure they are tired of hearing from me.) So I would say absolutely support their important work. But if you are looking to make a gift in the name of someone else, and you want notification sent, this might not be the foundation to choose.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Amazing organization with a passion for helping people!

1 Razan M.

Board Member

Rating: 5

Amazing org with amazing projects helping people in need every where with a main focus on the Syrian people scattered in the globe. ...Proud and honored to be part of such a wonderful organization and to work with such Faithful, hard working and giving people..

2 Hana H.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I had the honor to meet and work with Karam Foundation as part of their Dental team. They are one of the best no-for-profit that provide much needed help for the Syrian refugee children invisible in this world

1 Heba B.

Donor

Rating: 5

I've been a donor to Karam for a few years now. I feel confident in their ability to help Syrian refugees and I trust their transparent and efficient approach.

1 Maria169

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This organization has amazing efforts to help the Syrian refugees. Their approach is unique and impact reaches far and near. Their team is amazing and so dedicated.

1 ريم

Donor

Rating: 5

Amazing group that does amazing things for people who really need it. Had the pleasure and honor of volunteering with them on an overseas program; it was a wonderful experience that i'll never forget!

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Lina and her team are leading the way in helping Syrians in need. I have had the pleasure of working with them in multiple events and couldn't be more impressed by their professionalism and efficiency.

2

Donor

Rating: 5

Karam had done a lot of great things for Syrians, I like the commitment and devotion of Lina the head of the foundation,the organized work of the whole team, and the goals that they set and achieve,especially for kids education ❤️

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1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The people in Karam foundation are truly dedicated people who work in an organized way , and wisely use resources to help Syrian kids refugees. They not just help them to pass the trauma they've been through but give them as well ...love ..hope...and the ability to dream again , and they became role models for a lot of these kids .
I admire there work and would support the foundation in every way possible.

1 Rama B.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I remember when Lina first started the Karam foundation . The last few years she has dedicated every moment of her day to syria . I'm honored to call u my friend . And so grateful for everything you have done for our children , for syria

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Karam Foundation's unique approach to provide smart aid not only in Syria, but also in Turkey makes them stand out in comparison to other non-profits doing similar work across the region. Their transparency and perseverance to continue their work despite facing immense struggles shows their dedication to the cause. Wishing them all the best in the future.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

You see the passion and the hard work they do to help others. They come up with unique ideas and projects to build a better future for Syrian Refugees!

2 Karen440

Volunteer

Rating: 5

What is different about Karam Foundation is that they are working at a grass roots level to get aid in to Syria where it is needed the most, but they are also working with the thousands of refugees living in Turkey giving financial support and conducting creative workshops.
Fantastic organisation who spend the money on the people in need, not themselves.
So many great programs, well connected to the Syrian communities and always thinking ahead.

5 CMSCHROED

Donor

Rating: 5

I have not found an organization more impactful for Syrians on the ground (on the Turkish border of even within Syria) as Karam. They spend every penny as if their own and nearly all of the money gets to Syrians to empower and build lives. Their work with schools and communities in Rehanli is profound and their Karam Leadership Program has offered kids access to technology, tool to find and plan a vision of a future for themselves and beyond. It is extremely moving.

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1

Donor

Rating: 5

I have great respect for any non-profit that gets on the ground, understands the issues bottom up and builds a model that can scale and keep to these essentials. Of all the gorups, many wonderful, I know who have stepped into the terrible fray that is Syria, and made life changing impact especially among thousands of displaced people -- and keep us not forgetting about them -- Karam is the stand out.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Karam Foundation is an amazing organization with very passionate and dedicated people working to better the lives of Syrians and Syrian refugees. Their programs are very impactful and have touched many lives.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

While we know that children adapt themselves to, or seem to adapt themselves to, pretty much everything, what Syrian children are being subjected to, for years now, makes me uncomfortable to even be part of this callous world. Karam Foundation focuses on them - their education, their health, their smiles. The workshops they've conducted, and which photographs I've seen, show the levity, the relaxation they bring to the children. Albeit only for limited times, but still, long enough to make a memory, a crucial difference. I've met Lina Sergie, and follow other of the people who work for the foundation on Facebook, and entirely trust their judgment, sincerity and passion for doing their utmost best for Syrian children and their parents. I am grateful to them, and wish I had the money to contribute much much more. They've already, and will make a difference in so many lives.

2

Donor

Rating: 5

I first became aware of Karam a year ago and it has since become my favorite charity.
-Karam provides "Smart Aid" and they truly do. They are forward looking with empowering Syrian youth refugees living on the Turkey border with Syria to prepare them to be able to rebuild the country when they are able to return.
-Karam also provides humanitarian aid where and when it is needed most, eg, milk for infants, ambulances for the White Helmets, psychological support for kids with PTSD.
-Karam is efficient as well as effective with donations. The CEO, Lina Sergei, is a human dynamo and is advancing awareness of the plight of the refugees, and how they can be helped to help themselves.
Your philanthropy couldn't be better placed that with Karam Foundation!

Review from Guidestar

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Karam is an amazing organization working to build a better future for Syria. Karam's work is disrupting the old ways of humanitarian aid by implementing smart aid policies and programs that provide short-term and long-term solutions to the problems faced by refugees. Their work should be replicated by other organizations working in Syria and around the world.

4 Jim_165

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

It is so important and critical to help refugees that are impact with no fault of their own. Th Karam Foundation doing great things and giving back.

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Great organization full of amazing people doing wonderful things

5

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Karam: Giving a Future to Syrian Refugee Children

A couple months ago, the world was moved by a photograph of a young, lifeless Syrian child washed up on a Turkish beach. The death of this boy, Alan Kurdi, was just one out of thousands of stories of Syrian children who have been killed in the world’s worst humanitarian crisis. Millions of Syrian children have forgotten what it is like to be a child, to go to school, to look forward to the future with hope. Karam Foundation helps remind these kids--and the world--that Syrian refugee children are #NotInvisible. Through a variety of education programs and direct assistance to families in dire need, Karam restores hope to the world’s most vulnerable.

Since 2012, I have been donating to Karam Foundation, which helped over 322,000 Syrians and 72,000 children in 2014 alone. But two weeks ago, I had the opportunity to see firsthand the difference that Karam makes, by volunteering on one of the organization’s Innovative Education missions in southern Turkey, just a few miles from the Syrian border, at the Ruwwad Syrian Refugee School. 40 volunteer mentors and experts from around the world joined, among them dentists, doctors, psycho-social workers, artists, journalists, and even a culinary arts mentor!

These children have seen the worst of this world. Many of them had been rescued from their homes after they were bombed by Syrian government barrel bombs. Some of them had recently fled the horrors of ISIS. Many had lost fathers, mothers, or brothers and sisters. All of them had lost their homes. Despite the ugliness they have witnessed, they yearned to learn, to play, and to smile. They were just as innocent and enthusiastic as any child I have ever met, yet the trauma of the Syrian war was impossible to ignore.

My co-mentor and I prepared a week-long Student Council workshop for the high-school students to give them an experience in democracy, a concept they had only heard about while growing up under a dictatorship. At first we sensed cynicism from the kids as we discussed basic tenets of democracy and encouraged students to nominate themselves for office, but as they started to design campaign posters and work on their speeches, we noticed how invested they became in the process. By the last day, the excitement filled every classroom as the students debated and held elections. A brilliant young woman, Wafa, from the 12th grade became the first President of the Ruwwad Student Council.

During this time, other mentors taught the school’s 750 children cooking, journalism, filmmaking, self-defense, computer programming and philosophy. They were examined by dentists and eye doctors, many for the first time in their lives. They painted the grim halls of their school with colorful flowers, instructed by a muralist from South Africa. By our last day of the mission, the school and the students had been transformed, and so had each of the volunteers who had travelled with us.

As Syrian refugees are rejected and shunned in many countries, with politicians equating refugees with the terrorism they fled, Karam seeks to empower refugees instead. Karam has chosen to invest in Syria’s youth. Karam gives them the tools of mentorship and innovative education so these kids become global citizens equipped to succeed and create opportunities to build a better future for themselves, their communities, and their country.

This Giving Tuesday, I hope people around the world will chose to support Syrian refugees who have suffered unimaginable loss but still believe in building a hopeful future. Karam Foundation changes lives every single day. I witnessed for myself how lives can be transformed, and futures built, when dedicated individuals put humanity above everything else. That’s what inspires me to give.

Review from #MyGivingStory

Previous Stories
4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Karam Foundation is helping Syrians who are suffering every day in innovative and smart ways to ensure that your donation goes farther. Everyone who wants to make a difference for the Syrian people can do it by donating to Karam. The board and volunteers are passionate, smart, and committed to making every donation count.

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4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Karam Foundation does an excellent job of connecting people who want to support Syrians, and Syrian kids who want to succeed in school.

3

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Karam is built by an awesome dedicated team. The results of their work speak for their enormous efforts.
Good Luck to all team members.

4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Best crew for the best foundation and they serve few of the most needed causes in the world, keep up the good work guys we need more like you.

5 Milad K.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

In November 2014, I volunteered to help Karam setup a computer lab in Al-Salam school in Reyhanlı, Turkey near the border with Syria. The lab had 20 desktop computers and 2 stronger computers which were capable enough to handle video editing and graphic design software. The Lab had one printer and an internet connection.

Upon having the PCs ready, another volunteer team took over the lab with 20-30 Syrian refugee students. They were teaching the students Scratch, a visual programming language from MIT (https://scratch.mit.edu). I wouldn't forget the hunger for knowledge in the eyes of those young men. Eventually, they created stories and interactive objects that move on the screen, using variables, conditions and loops. etc. in Scratch.

On another day, another team took over with other groups of students, they were young women, mostly in the age of high school, they were taught interactively how to search for scholarships and how to teach themselves English and other foreign languages using Duolingo and other related programs.

Then I had to leave before the conclusion of the week-long workshops. It was a remarkable experience for me. I left Reyhanlı with high hope that we helped as many as we can of those Syrian students to open their eyes and be reminded that there are always hope for a better tomorrow. And most importantly, I hoped that we had helped to set many of them on tracks for better careers in the future.

I'd keep supporting Karam and volunteering in their workshops as long as they live up to the high quality of their programs.

Milad Kawas Cale
Just another Syrian refugee

3

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

The efforts of Karam Foundation is truly remarkable!

7

Donor

Rating: 5

Karam Foundation has consistently provided very necessary services to the Syrian people for the last four years, and it has done so with great transparency such that donors have confidence that their money is going where it is most needed.

Previous Stories
5

Donor

Rating: 5

Karam Foundation has proven itself to be one of the most trustworthy and effective non-profit organizations working to alleviate the suffering of the Syrian people. Karam's leaders work with total transparency; they are fully committed to helping those in need and their work is filled with love and compassion. The crisis in Syria is the worst humanitarian crisis in modern history, and Karam continues to come up with innovative ways to meet the short-term and long-term needs of the Syrian people. I have complete faith that every dollar donated to Karam goes to those who need it most.

2

Donor

Rating: 5

This is an organization of great people doing great work. I have been 100% proud of what little I've given in the past and am proud to know some of the folks involved. Kudos to them.

3 Shadia M.

Donor

Rating: 5

Karam does great work for Syrian kids. I have connected Karam with a charity on the ground in Aleppo, Syria taking care of orphans. The charity was in desperate need of support as the number of orphans increased with every barrel bomb that fell on the city. Karam came through. Thank you Karam for being there for those in need.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Karam Foundation does phenomenal work to help alleviate the dire situation Syrian refugees face. What I love most about this organization is its transparency and its mission to help people in need help themselves through their smart aid initiative.

Review from Guidestar

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I feel so lucky to have worked with such a wonderful organization. The trip with Karam Foundation to Turkey was truly one of the most rewarding humanitarian trips I have been on thus far. My favorite part of Karam is their commitment to giving kids the tools and experiences they deserve to have as children. By running programs like art, yoga, photography, and storytelling, Karam gives children a vessel through which they can learn to express themselves in a way that is best for them. One of my favorite memories from the trip was when a middle school boy came up to me the day after he attended the yoga class with Karam. He told me that he did some of the yoga poses he learned before going to bed that night. He said that he loved the yoga class so much and planned on doing yoga every day because it makes him feel calm and happy. This is what Karam lives for.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

The best thing about Karam foundation's projects is their focus on the education of the young Syrian refugees, providing them with modern curriculum and very well-trained staff. The smiles we see on the young faces say it all. Thumbs up Karam

Donor

Rating: 5

The Karam Foundation does incredible work developing bespoke interventions for what Syrians need and is constantly responsive to the changing circumstances.

In addition to the direct aid they provide Karam Foundation does a fantastic job communicating both their work, and a wider narrative of what is happening in Syria.

Wyleal

Donor

Rating: 5

What sets Karam apart is that they focus on long term solutions while simultaneously accomplishing short term results. As a donor, I especially enjoy the transparency they have built themselves upon as well as the compassion behind the Karam team (who are visibly changing the game). The children of Syria can count one more blessing thanks to this awesome organization, keep up the great work!

Review from Guidestar

1 Daniabawadkji

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Karam foundation is the best I know of as far as what they do and the amount they keep for administration . They are very efficient and trustful . They are the front line foundation on education and hunger for Syrian children .
God bless you .

Donor

Rating: 5

KARAM is a wonderful and transparent organization that addresses the needs of Syrian children.
There programs offer hope and real life skills to their clients

1 Nada H.

Donor

Rating: 5

Karam Foundation is by far one of the most organized, efficient, trustworthy, and creative aid organizations to the children of Syria. Their work is simply amazing. I personally know the founder, Lina Sergie, and she is one of the most passionate, sincere, and hardworking individuals that I know, and she has done an incredible job leading this humanitarian organization to nothing less than excellence.