Help us shape our future (only takes two minutes)

September

As a valued supporter we would love to know what excites you about our work. Please complete the survey, it only takes two minutes!

Take the survey

 

 

 

 

 

 

Help us shape our future (only takes two minutes)

September

Help us shape our future. As a valued supporter, we would love to hear what excites you about our work. Please fill out our short survey and let us know what you think – it only takes two minutes to complete!
To take the survey please click here.

 

Lobbying politicians on the issue of Iraq’s persecuted Christians  

September

For those Christians who currently remain in Iraq life is tough. Most are internally displaced people (IDPs) who have been forced from their homes and are now living in tents, caravans, basements or sharing crowded accommodation with other families. Those from the villages of the Nineveh Plain may have lost everything when Islamic State advanced. Now that the Iraqi army has pushed back the terrorists, it is hoped that families will be able to return, but often it is to homes that are little more than rubble or otherwise have been stripped of all furnishings and other belongings.

We are lobbying governments at home and abroad to take concerted action to address the tragic circumstances of these people. Last week we were at the House of Lords meeting with Lord Alton and Baroness Nicholson, and then a meeting with the Department for International Development. We are pressing for action to provide relief and reconstruction resources directly to the Christians in northern Iraq and to pressure the Iraqi government to provide the necessary security to ensure that families feel safe enough to return to their homes.

Later this month I will be in Brussels to meet with Lars Adaktusson, a prominent MEP from the Swedish Christian Democrats who was part of the recent conference: ‘A Future for Christians in Iraq’. 60 representatives attended this conference including politicians from Iraqi Christian parties, leading Iraqi church bishops and ministers, members of the Kurdish Regional Government, Yazidis, Turkmen, Ka’kai, and NGOs including FRRME (we were a sponsoring partner), along with representatives from the EPP (the largest political group in the European Parliament) and the US State Department.

Following presentations there was a signing of a joint position paper on reconstruction, the right to return, reconciliation, and security. Lars Adaktusson restated the demands of Iraqi Christians for the right to live in their own homes freely and safely with the opportunity to follow their Christian faith as equal citizens in Iraqi society. When I meet with Lars later this month we hope to schedule a visit to Baghdad to meet with senior political and religious leaders there.

Father Emmanuel’s funeral service in Amman

 

I would also like to share some words of condolence at the passing of Father Emmanuel of the Syrian Orthodox Church in Amman. He was a friend and partner of the foundation whose compassion and beneficence was widely known. With our support, he took in many Iraqi Christian refugees who had nowhere else to go. His funeral was attended by hundreds of people including our Project Officer in Jordan, Helena Scott. For those with access to Facebook, footage from the service can be viewed on the Noursat Jordan page here. Needless to say, with your support we will continue working with our church partners in Jordan.

Mike Simpson
CEO

Please make a donation

If you are a UK resident, you can make a single or regular donation via our website by clicking here.

American supporters can make a donation via our sister organisation, FRRME America, by clicking here.

Alternatively, you can make a donation to our humanitarian appeal by clicking here.

Thank you for your support!

Middle East Report interviews our new CEO, Mike Simpson (PART TWO)

September

In this exclusive interview with Middle East Report, FRRME’s new CEO Mike Simpson talks about what we are doing to help Iraq’s displaced Christians – click on the below image to listen to part two of the interview. 

Part one of the interview can be heard here. In the coming weeks and months we will be sharing more stories from the people we are helping in Iraq and Jordan. It is thanks to your continued support that they endure.

Alen

“In Mosul the situation was very bad, especially for the Christians. We were afraid of them and afraid for our lives. It was too dangerous to stay in Iraq.”

Imad

“I was living near Mosul. During the war (2003 invasion), people were being killed according to their identity. I saw my friends in a car near my house get killed.”

 

These radio stations will also feature the interview (click on the logos)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you would like to support our work please make a donation by clicking here.

Thank you!

How your support is helping Iraqi Christian refugees in Jordan 

September

Last week we introduced our new initiative – Voices of Iraq – a project to give displaced Iraqi Christians a voice. Some of these people have made their way to Jordan where, thanks to your continued support, they are slowly rebuilding their shattered lives.

With the money you gave us, we delivered clothing coupons to 510 children from all over Jordan. Buses brought them to the distribution point, the Syrian Orthodox Church in Amman, which is run by our dear friend and partner Father Emmanuel.

Distributing clothing coupons at the Syrian Orthodox Church
 

Our English language class at the Nazarene Church continues to grow – there are now 20 refugees in the class, most of whom fled Baghdad and Qaraqosh. The class recently discussed “Hopes and Dreams”. All of them expressed their desire to leave the Middle East and resettle in the West where they can live in peace with their families.

An Iraqi Christian woman and her son buy vegetables with the food coupon we gave her
 

At the Assemblies of God Church, which is run by Pastor You and his family, we gave out vouchers to 115 refugee families which were used to buy fresh food. We are also continuing our support for a trauma and healing workshop for women who have experienced domestic violence.

A choir singing at the Cultural Arts Festival at the Greek Catholic Church
 

The Greek Catholic Church in Amman recently hosted a Cultural Arts Festival where refugees expressed themselves through art and music. Our support for the church, which includes a monthly stipend for food relief, is received with love and appreciation by the congregation.

Please support our work and make a donation

If you are a UK resident, you can make a single or regular donation via our website by clicking here.

American supporters can make a donation via our sister organisation, FRRME America, by clicking here.

Alternatively, you can make a donation to our humanitarian appeal by clicking here.

Thank you for your support!

The FRRME Team

Voices of Iraq

September

The persecuted Christians of Iraq have not been heard strongly enough in the corridors of government or in the media. With that in mind, here they are, in their own words. If you would like to help them, please support our work and make a donation (giving options at the bottom of this update). N.B. Raed asked that we did not show his face.

Alen

“In Mosul the situation was very bad, especially for the Christians. We were afraid of them and afraid for our lives. It was too dangerous to stay in Iraq.”

 

Ammar

“I was living in Qaraqosh, a town with just Christian people. About 60,000 people lived there. I was an art teacher and I also had a mobile phone shop. In 2014 ISIS attacked Qaraqosh. There were three choices for us – convert to Islam, pay the Jizya (tax for non-Muslims), or be killed. We fled Qaraqosh in just our clothes.”

 

 

 

Imad
 

“I was living near Mosul. During the war (2003 invasion), people were being killed according to their identity. I saw my friends in a car near my house get killed.”

 

Afnan

 

“Living as a Christian in Iraq is very hard, especially for girls. You cannot go out or do anything. They think that it’s okay for Christians to do anything or wear anything we want because they think Christianity is what they see on TV or in the movies, that you can do anything – sleep around, drink alcohol, do drugs, do whatever you want. This is the image of Christianity in the mind of many Muslims.”

 

Michael
 

 

“In Mosul I had a restaurant but they blew it up because I am Christian. After that I went back to Qaraqosh which was a safe place. When ISIS came there in 2014 I left everything behind and went to Jordan.”

 

 

 

 

 

Raed

“My wife and I left the day before ISIS came into the town. My wife was about to give birth so I had to make preparations and go quickly. The hard part for me was leaving my parents and brother behind. I will never hold a gun. I won’t fight for land. The most important thing for me is that my family is safe.”

 

Making a donation

With your support, we provide monthly food, shelter and medical care to 700 Iraqi Christian families in Jordan. If you would like to help us in our mission, please see the giving options below.

If you are a UK resident, you can make a single or regular donation via our website by clicking here.

American supporters can make a donation via our sister organisation, FRRME America, by clicking here.

Alternatively, you can make a donation to our humanitarian appeal by clicking here.

UK residents can also make a donation via text message by following the instructions below:

Thank you for your support,

The FRRME Team

Amid the Baghdad bombings, we deliver food to the Christians

August

Baghdad has been rocked by more sectarian violence this week. On Monday, a massive car bomb ripped through a packed market in the Shiite district of Sadr City. 12 people were killed and 28 wounded. Despite the danger, we are continuing to deliver aid to members of the congregation at St George’s, the only Anglican Church in Iraq.

The above picture is of an Iraqi Christian woman we are helping called Um Masara. She is a widow with three children, one of whom is autistic and also suffers from epilepsy. The four of them live in the Mansour district of Baghdad. With your support, we have been helping Um Masara and her children for four years now, providing them with food packages and medical assistance at our free health clinic at St George’s Church.

This week, we delivered food supplies to Debaga Camp in northern Iraq where approximately 30,000 internally displaced people live in cramped conditions. The food we delivered included cooking oil, rice, tomatoes, potatoes, fresh chicken, lentils, onions, aubergines, fresh bread and qishta (cheese). The people we fed are Sunni Muslims, the largest displaced group in northern Iraq.

While we are working hard to feed the dispossessed, Islamic State fighters are holed-up around the city of Tel Afar 40 miles west of Mosul. Reuters quoted an Iraqi army officer this week who said that breaching the first line of the militants’ defense in the town of Ayadiya was like opening “the gates of hell”. It is a stark and unsettling reminder that the fighting is not over.

If you would like to support our mission, please see the giving options below. Our work is made possible by your generous and continued support.

Making a donation

If you are a UK resident, you can make a single or regular donation via our website by clicking here.

American supporters can make a donation via our sister organisation, FRRME America, by clicking here.

Alternatively, you can make a donation to our humanitarian appeal by clicking here.

UK residents can also make a donation via text message by following the instructions below:

Thank you for your support,

The FRRME Team

An update on our reconciliation work

August

We are moving our reconciliation work forward. In the past, we connected with religious leaders, people whose influence we relied upon to make a positive impact. Post-ISIS, there must also be a political settlement. The future of Iraq will be decided at a governmental level, although religious leaders will of course play a role.

We are now working as part of an NGO caucus lobbying ministers to put the plight of Christians and other persecuted minorities at the heart of government policy. As our new CEO, Mike Simpson, said last week: “Iraqi Christians have not been heard strongly enough in the corridors of government or in our media.” We want to change this.

Last week, a letter was delivered to the Secretary of State for International Development, Priti Patel. It was signed by FRRME Trustee, Christopher Segar (former Head of Mission in Iraq for the British government), and a number of other Christian charities and MPs. In no uncertain terms it calls on the British government to allocate more funds for displaced Iraqi Christians and Yazidis. Here is an excerpt:

“… nothing has been allocated to date for the many thousands of Christians and Yazidis who lost their homes 3 years ago (including in Mosul) and who are now faced with a grave humanitarian and existential crisis… the same story also applies to the many thousands of Christians across the rest of Iraq, and into Lebanon, Turkey, Jordan and Syria, who are being cared for by other churches and faith-based NGOs but who have received entirely insufficient UN support.”

This must change. Western governments must do more to help Iraqi Christians, as must the UN. Indeed, despite the UN’s commitment to providing humanitarian aid, this has not reached the Iraqi Christians. Going forward, we will be putting this case to more decision makers.

A Future for Iraqi Christians DVD

 


We have produced a short film called ‘A Future for Iraqi Christians’ which gives an overview of our mission. A DVD of the film is available for £5 plus £2.20 P&P from our shop. To order a copy please click here.

Making a donation

If you are a UK resident, you can make a single or regular donation via our website by clicking here.

American supporters can make a donation via our sister organisation, FRRME America, by clicking here.

Alternatively, you can make a donation to our humanitarian appeal by clicking here.

UK residents can also make a donation via text message by following the instructions below:

Thank you for your support,

The FRRME Team

A message from our new Chief Executive

August

I am delighted to join The Foundation for Relief and Reconciliation in the Middle East (FRRME) as the new Chief Executive. FRRME is a unique charity working with many thousands of Iraqis who have been forced from their homes and terrorised beyond belief.

Iraq has been in our news so much over the last few years that we may get anaesthetised to the tragedy and horror we see on our screens and read in our newspapers. The news has often focused on the war and all the political controversy about it, but the humanitarian crisis facing Iraq now looks likely to last long after the last shots have been fired.

The latest UN figures show that 3.4 million Iraqis have been displaced, with 11 million people in need of humanitarian assistance. In particular, over 1 million Christians have fled their homes as a consequence of the sectarian violence and under the threat of so-called Islamic State. This represents over three quarters of the Christian population of the Country! It is a crisis of truly biblical proportions.

FRRME has been at the coalface of this crisis for over two years now, providing emergency relief to thousands of displaced Christians living in Erbil, the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan, as well to many others living in internal displacement camps across northern Iraq.

I am passionate about leading our team to build on their excellent work and to help the Christians of Iraq to tell their story. Their voices have certainly not been heard strongly enough in the corridors of government or in our media.

For me, this is an exciting and unique opportunity after over 30 years working in the charity sector, mainly at CEO level. Over the years I have worked with all kinds of disadvantaged groups including homeless young people, drug addicts, the unemployed, families suffering from the effects of domestic abuse, and those struggling with huge debts. I have also worked across religious divides in Israel / Palestine, seeking to build bridges of understanding.

I am passionate about working with the FRRME team to develop our work across the Middle East and to truly manifest Christian faith and compassion in action.

Mike Simpson, 17 August 2017

This week in Iraq

It is a month since the battle for Mosul came to an end and revenge is rife. Rotting corpses have been seen floating down the Tigris, their hands tied behind their backs. Some are IS fighters. Some are civilian collaborators. Some are the victims of the (Shia dominated) Iraqi army, killed simply for being Sunni. How can we stop this cycle of homicidal retribution? What future is there for the Christians caught in the middle of the violence?

We have delivered emergency relief to 17 IDP camps across northern Iraq and Kurdistan
 

While a post-conflict settlement has yet to be agreed, the humanitarian needs in Iraq are greater than ever. We are continuing to provide emergency relief (food, water, medical supplies) to 7,048 internally displaced Iraqi Christians in northern Iraq and Baghdad. This includes 140 people at St George’s Church where we fully fund a free health clinic. We also continue to support 700 Iraqi Christian families in Jordan. Currently, 50% of our total funding is spent supporting the persecuted church.

Dr Sarah Ahmed, our Director of Operations in the Middle East, 
feeds a young girl recently fled from Mosul

Our work is made possible by your generous donations. If you would like to support our mission helping Iraqi Christians and other persecuted religious groups, please see the giving options below.

Making a donation

If you are a UK resident, you can make a single or regular donation via our website by clicking here.

American supporters can make a donation via our sister organisation, FRRME America, by clicking here.

Alternatively, you can make a donation to our humanitarian appeal by clicking here.

UK residents can also make a donation via text message by following the instructions below:

Thank you for your support,

The FRRME Team

Surviving in Jordan – An Update from our Project Officer in Amman

August

Three months after moving to Jordan from the US and I am writing with hope, determination and an increased thirst to help the Iraqi Christian refugees here. In July I set up an English class in Madaba, a city to the south of Amman, which has given me the opportunity to get to know the people we are helping.

Iraqi children at our English class in Madaba draw their family trees
 

Last week, I visited a family recently arrived from a displacement camp in Erbil in Iraqi Kurdistan. Thanks to your support, they are now living in a small apartment in Amman. They are so grateful for the improved living conditions we have been able to provide. In Iraq, the husband, Rafed, was a civil engineer. His face lit up as he spoke about his past. He showed me photos of churches in Iraq he helped design and build. Despite his new life as a refugee, he is happy that his family are safe from the sectarian violence they saw in their homeland. Before FRRME came to their aid, his wife was forced to sell all her jewellery to pay for food. However, she told me she managed to hold on to her wedding ring.

Rafed’s wife and children
 

This week I visited another family. The dad, Wassim, is a former IT manager who worked on computers for the US Army and NATO forces. Wassim and his family arrived in Jordan a year and a half ago. Prior to that, they lived in a displacement camp in Erbil. While it is tough in Jordan – Wassim toils as a labourer seven days a week and is only paid £7 / $10 per day – he really appreciates his new life. He is extremely grateful for the support we give him and his family which includes monthly food packages. Despite feeling exhausted from work, Wassim is hopeful that things will get better. He and his family dream of going to Australia but the asylum process can take years.

Wassim with his children
 

After three months in Jordan, I feel I am really getting to know the families we are helping. My eyes have been opened to the challenges and hardships they endure on a daily basis. Our mission is to help make their lives a little bit easier. Whether this is through the provision of food packages, rent money, or English classes, with your support we will continue to give them hope for the future.

Blog written by Helena Scott, FRRME’s Project Officer in Jordan.

A Future for Iraqi Christians DVD
 


We have produced a short film called ‘A Future for Iraqi Christians’ which gives an overview of our mission. A DVD of the film is available for £5 plus £2.20 P&P from our shop. To order a copy please click here.

Making a donation

If you are a UK resident, you can make a single or regular donation via our website by clicking here.

American supporters can make a donation via our sister organisation, FRRME America, by clicking here.

Alternatively, you can make a donation to our humanitarian appeal by clicking here.

UK residents can also make a donation via text message by following the instructions below:

Stewardship

We are registered with Stewardship, which has set up a support fund for our foundation. You can also support us by making gifts to Stewardship for our fund. Where applicable, the value of your gifts may be increased by use of Gift Aid (worth 25% if you are a UK taxpayer). Please see the attached FORM. Once complete, please return to: Stewardship, Unit A, 1 Lamb’s Passage, London EC1Y 8AB.

Thank you for your support,

The FRRME Team
Pages: 1 2 3 6
Insights from Sarah Ahmed, Director of Operations
Get our news, prayer updates and blog posts straight to your inbox Make a 
<a href=Get our news, prayer updates and blog posts straight to your inbox Signup to receive our e-newsletter

Archives