News

Mohamed leverages knowledge for sustained success

Mohamed embarked on his career journey in 2005, establishing a small wood dyeing workshop in his vibrant community. In the early days, his clientele primarily consisted of acquaintances and friends. Undeterred by the simplicity of his hand equipment, Mohamed set out to distinguish himself through the mastery of his craft and a commitment to delivering …

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Near East Foundation Launches Siraj Financial Services to Expand Micro and Small Enterprise Financing in Northern Syria

Near East Foundation (NEF) today announced the establishment of Siraj Financial Services (SFS), a new social enterprise operating in Northern Syria. SFS, operating as a non-banking financial institution (NBFI), will upscale and commercialize NEF’s successful micro and small enterprise (MSE) financing program, which has been operating in the region since 2021. With a mission to …

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NEF and UNDP Sign Memorandum of Understanding to Develop Innovative Joint Responses to Protracted Crisis in the Arab Region

AMMAN, JORDAN – Near East Foundation (NEF) and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Regional Bureau for Arab States (RBAS) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to expand collaboration in developing programming opportunities and new funding mechanisms to support forcibly displaced people and host communities, particularly in countries affected by the Syria Crisis.  The agreement between …

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Near East Foundation’s Impact Bond Becomes the World’s First Refugee Bond to Receive the Orange Bond Label

London, UK – On September 25, 2023, Near East Foundation’s Refugee Impact Bond (DIB) was certified as an Orange Bond, a major milestone as this is a first for a peace-building refugee-focused impact bond. The Orange Bond Initiative™ is the world’s first asset class built by and for the Global South and the 99% as a …

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NEF’s Response to the Crisis in Armenia

In late September, Ruben Vardanyan, business leader, philanthropist and co-founder of the Aurora Humanitarian Initiative, was detained by Azerbaijani authorities when he tried to cross the border to Armenia. He is currently being held captive. Ruben is a longtime supporter and friend of Near East Foundation (NEF). He and his wife, Veronika, have been extremely …

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NEF’s Response to the Earthquake in Northwest Syria

Based on our preliminary assessment, 15% of the 725 people the Near East Foundation (NEF) supports in Northern Aleppo, Syria, have been significantly impacted by the earthquake. They have all graduated from our business strengthening program and have received financing to build their small business in order to provide basic needs for their families. The …

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The Near East Foundation and International Stakeholders Celebrate $14M Development Impact Bond for Refugees in the Middle East

The Development Impact Bond is building economic resilience for refugees and host communities in Jordan and Lebanon Amman, Jordan – The IKEA Foundation, Novo Nordisk Foundation, Norad, the U.S. Development Finance Corporation (DFC), Ferd, KOIS, and the Near East Foundation (NEF) convened on 8 November at the Landmark Amman Hotel to mark the launch of …

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The First Refugee Impact Bond: building economic resilience for refugees and host communities

Over the past 11 years, 13.5 million Syrians have been forcibly displaced from their homes. The struggle to recover and rebuild is a daily strain for millions – especially as funding and attention to the crisis have declined. The first Refugee Development Impact Bond (DIB) was launched in October 2021 in Jordan to innovatively address the …

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NEF launches new EU-funded project to strengthen civil society organizations across Armenia

Arpine Baghdoyan, NEF Armenia Director, expressed her enthusiasm for the project during the launch event in Yerevan. NEF’s newest European Union-funded project in Armenia, ‘STRIVE for a better future: communities and civil society resilience in Armenia’, launched to improve the resilience, sustainability, accountability, and capacity for innovation of local civil society organizations (CSOs) across the …

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Near East Foundation Board Names John Ashby and Simona Ceci as Co-Presidents as Charles Benjamin Steps Down as President and CEO

Dr. Charles Benjamin announced that, after twelve years in his position, he will step down as President and CEO of the Near East Foundation (NEF), an international development organization operating in the Middle East, Africa, and the Caucasus. To support a smooth transition, Charlie will remain as CEO through June 30, 2022 before shifting to …

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