Kurdistan Save the Children (KSC)

Linked to our presentation of Hero Ahmad – Iraq on January 19, 2006.

Kurdistan Save the Children (KSC) is a Kurdish, non-governmental, children’s organization, founded in 1991 by Mrs Hero Ahmed Talabani. We work for the benefit of all children, and run projects nationwide to improve, develop, and support the lives of children.

We work mainly in Iraqi Kurdistan, but as the need for help is enormous in central and southern Iraq, we have also extended some of the activities to include Baghdad, Kirkuk, and other areas liberated since the Iraqi liberation Operation. We plan to extend into the whole country in the near future, but the speed of development depends on the security situation.

Our main office is in the city of Sulaimaniya in Iraqi Kurdistan. We are also registered in the UK under the name of Kurdistan Children’s Fund (KCF). The office in London handles our various matters: finance, administration, distance sponsorship, fund-raising and recruitment.

Due to the confusion in this country, between the name of our charity and that of ‘Save the Children-UK’, ‘Kurdistan Save the Children in the UK’ (KSC) was changed into ‘Kurdistan Children’s Fund’ (KCF). Ever since, the organisation has consisted of two parts with different names, but both working for the same cause. KCF is the international, London based fundraiser, while KSC works as the local implementing partner and fundraiser in Kurdistan.

Why did we form?: In the aftermath of the Gulf war in 1991, millions of Kurds fled to the mountains to escape the Iraqi army and Saddam Hussein’s regime. Media and documentation from that time tell stories of unimaginable suffering amongst the people. They faced starvation, lack of shelter, epidemic diseases and terrible weather conditions.

A group of dedicated, passionate people set up Kurdistan Save the Children. At the time, the formation of a national organization was imperative, as a local staff had a much better grasp of what the war torn country lacked at that stage. They founded the organisation to help anybody living in dire need and distress. In the beginning it was mainly refugees, but over the years, the net has widened to include: widows, street children, disabled children, and the poor.

Our main aim is to work directly or indirectly, to create a better future for all children, by improving or providing for their various physical, medical, social, economic and educational needs.

What do we do?: KSC works for the benefit of children. We have five main sectors in which we try to address children’s needs either particular or in general. KSC have many years of experience working with children in all aspects and our programs for child protection, education and sponsorship have been running for several of those years. In 2005 we also developed the sector concerning children’s health into several branches which means we can help more children, and have access to specialist resources.

The Distance Sponsorship Program was initiated in 1992; we now have more than 2,800 private sponsors donating money to individual children every month. The money goes towards, school fees, uniform and books, medicine or treatment, and general comforts.

Mission & Strategies:

Kurdistan Save the Children works for a world

• which respects and values each child

• which listens to children and learns

• where all children have hope and opportunity

• where children do not have to suffer the infinite grief of war

Read the rest about this NGO on KSC-KCF.org.

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