In an effort to alleviate the suffering of thousands of Iraq’s war torn and displaced Chaldean refugees in Turkey, the Turkish Coalition of America (TCA) and the Chaldean Federation of America held a signing ceremony in West Bloomfield, Michigan to formalize a $100,000 humanitarian assistance grant from the TCA to the CFA.
Monsignor Francois Yakan, Vicar of the Chaldean Patriarchate in Turkey and Mr. Erol Dura, a board member of the Turkish Chaldean-Assyrian-Syriac Humanitarian Organization (KASDER) also attended the signing ceremony from Turkey. KASDER was selected as the facilitator and provider of this humanitarian aid grant to the displaced Iraqi Chaldeans who found refuge in Turkey. CFA and KASDER agreed to allocate 100% of the grant funds for the intended humanitarian relief; no overhead cost will be deducted. KASDER and the Turkish Chaldean/Assyrian community's existing efforts play a valuable role in supplementing the Turkish government's assistance program to address the most pressing needs of the thousands of Iraqi refugees in Turkey.
“The Chaldean Federation of America is grateful to the Turkish American Community for the well thought and just in time humanitarian aid grant towards the immediate needs of the thousands of displaced Iraqi Chaldeans scattered throughout Turkey. CFA will continue to work with TCA to ensure adequate humanitarian relief and protection to those who need it the most,” said Joseph T. Kassab, Executive Director of CFA.
Attending the signing ceremony, Congressman Gary C. Peters said: “The Iraqi refugee crisis continues to be one of the world’s most pressing humanitarian concerns. The work that the Chaldean Federation of America is doing to serve this vulnerable population is of critical importance, and helps contribute to the overall stability and security of the region.” Congressman Peters represents Michigan’s 9th Congressional District which includes the Chaldean Federation of America’s national headquarters and is home to tens of thousands of Chaldean-Americans. He added, “I extend my gratitude to the Turkish Coalition of America for providing this grant, and look forward to working with both of these organizations to help address the needs of Iraqis refugees and internally displaced people.”
Other members of Congress from Michigan also voiced their support to this humanitarian effort. “I thank the Turkish Coalition of America for providing financial support to one of the largest Chaldean populations in southeastern Michigan,” said Congresswoman Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick (MI-13). “This donation to the Chaldean Federation of America illustrates the positive impact that America’s ethnic communities can have on improving the lives of people in the United States and abroad. I applaud both organizations for working together to assist those in need.”
“There are hundreds of thousands of Iraqi minorities who fled from violence and threats on their lives in Iraq, only to find they are unable to support themselves and their families in host countries where they live as refugees,” said Congressman John Dingell (MI-15). The partnership between the Turkish Coalition of America and the Chaldean Federation of America, which will provide assistance to displaced Iraqi Chaldeans in Turkey, is a much needed lifeline for this vulnerable population. As a Representative from a Congressional District with a high proportion of Iraqi refugees resettled in the United States, I have seen first hand that the U.S. cannot simply rely on the generosity of groups like TCA and CFA. The U.S. must lead by example, and immediately implement a comprehensive plan to address the Iraqi refugee crisis.”
“TCA is proud to make this donation to the Chaldean Federation of America in an effort to help alleviate the suffering of displaced individuals,” said Lincoln McCurdy, President of the TCA. “It is our hope that this effort will continue our efforts to build bridges between communities and further understanding between cultures.”
TCA and CFA will continue to promote their relationship to their respective communities and the general public in the U.S. and Turkey to provide the best possible comfort to the displaced Iraqi Chaldeans in Turkey.