Qatar’s Ambassador to the United States, H.E. Nasser Bin Hamad Al-Khalifa, has announced new gifts of $5.6 million representing the final installment of the $100 million Qatar Katrina Fund. The Fund was announced in September 2005 by His Highness Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, Amir of the State of Qatar, to assist victims of Hurricane Katrina in the Gulf Coast area.
January 8, 2007: Qatar’s Ambassador to the United States, H.E. Nasser Bin Hamad Al-Khalifa, has announced new gifts of $5.6 million representing the final installment of the $100 million Qatar Katrina Fund. The Fund was announced in September 2005 by His Highness Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, Amir of the State of Qatar, to assist victims of Hurricane Katrina in the Gulf Coast area.
The Qatar Katrina Fund was established to provide direct cash assistance to people and institutions in most dire need in the wake of the storm. Gifts were committed to healthcare, education, housing, and places of worship. The Fund’s first phase of donations, totaling more than $61 million, was announced on May 2, 2006 and included grants to rebuild homes, financial assistance to provide medical care, and university scholarships – all reserved for victims of Katrina. The second phase, representing $33 million in gifts announced on September 8, 2006, targeted the hardest hit areas of Mississippi and Louisiana and commemorated the one-year anniversary of the hurricane. With the latest gift announced today, all $100 million are now committed.
Ambassador Al Khalifa personally led the effort to identify gift recipients and select local organizations to manage and distribute the funds to assure that they reached the people who needed them most. According to Ambassador Al Khalifa, “While this represents the final phase of the Qatar Katrina Fund’s donations, we hope that the impact will be felt for many years. Our intention was to meet emergency needs first and foremost, but also to support individuals and local institutions who are building for the future.”
Ambassador Al Khalifa received considerable advice in evaluating prospective gift recipients from the Governors and U.S. Congressional Delegations from the most affected states, the Mayors of major cities, a distinguished advisory committee and other community leaders. In addition, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP will audit gift project expenditures from the Qatar Katrina Fund.
The Qatar Katrina Fund chose the following organizations for the final phase of its $100 million donation:
Humanity First USA, a leading worldwide disaster relief and human development organization, will receive a gift of $1.17 million to repair two schools and five mosques serving the Muslim community in New Orleans. In working closely with the Jefferson Muslim Association of the Greater New Orleans area, Humanity First intends to have these hurricane-damaged facilities repaired and in operation within the next year
Loyola University, New Orleans will receive a $1.4 million gift to establish the Qatar Scholarship Fund, which will be used during the next three years to fund 140 scholarships of $10,000 each for financially disadvantaged students from the Gulf Coast who were among those most affected by Hurricane Katrina.
Neighborhood Housing Services of New Orleans, will receive a $3,096,511 gift to provide subsidies of up to $25,000 each for the purchase of affordable housing in the New Orleans area for low and moderate income Katrina victims.
For more information, please contact:
Humanity First USA, Inc.
Humanity First is registered in 43 countries across 6 continents, and has been working on human development projects and responding to disasters since 1994. These have included the earthquakes in Turkey, Pakistan, Japan and Iran, floods in Africa and Latin America, hurricanes (Katrina and Rita) , tornado's (Kansas) and wild fires (California) in the USA, Indonesia and Bangladesh, and conflicts in Eastern Europe.
Since its inception and IRS registration in 2004, Humanity First has been focused on spending most of the raised funds on direct program related expenses. As a result, more than 90% of its funds are in that expense category. This is achieved through dedicated volunteers in its management, and program operation teams.