Today, March 8, 2019, marks the three-year anniversary of the Asherah Foundation! This non-profit has come a long way since its origins in a handful of conversations among colleagues discussing increasing refugee crises around the world, and difficulties for so many in accessing higher education. These conversations turned into a coherent idea, from: “someone should do something about this” to: “what if we did something about this?” “Be the change you wish to see in the world” has been our informal mantra.
The Asherah Foundation was named after an ancient Mesopotamian goddess (Asherah), known as “she who treads on the sea.” This seemed fitting as many of the stories we were hearing involved treacherous sea voyages – many of which involved areas that were once part of Mesopotamia. Furthermore, many of the stories we were hearing involved women overcoming significant obstacles to obtain education, employment, and a better life for their families.
So, on March 8, 2016, we formed the Asherah Foundation. It has been global since its inception, with Executive Board members, scholarship applicants, Advisory Board members, and interns from countries all over the world. Many who have worked with us have overcome significant obstacles themselves. They are highlighted in the following pages.
In 2018, we had many reasons to celebrate. Amani Jebril, one of our first scholarship recipients completed her master’s degree in Water Science and Environment at Birzeit University and published a book based on her research: Bio-energy in Palestine between Reality and Potential. Ms. Jebril was also invited to consult on the evaluation and updating of two graduate programs at the university.
In 2018 we celebrated the progress of another amazing, and resilient woman. Maryline Jabar, eldest of four, grew up in the heart of a civil war. She has been pursuing her Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Health Sciences at the Stella Maris Polytechnic University in Monrovia, Liberia. First awarded a scholarship in 2017, she made such outstanding progress that we were able to renew her scholarship for 2018.
In 2018 we also awarded a scholarship to Nour Awerah, studying banking and finance at Yildrim Beyazit University after being forcibly-displaced due to the ongoing conflicts in Syria. Finally, we awarded a scholarship to Maklin Hussein Al-Ahmadi, a single mother who fled from the conflict in Yemen and is now finishing her doctoral thesis in Economics in Egypt.
The Asherah Foundation’s scholarships are supported entirely by donations. Our capacity to offer scholarships is limited only by the donations we receive. Support these inspiring and resilient women by making a donation today!
Our Annual Report
In recognition of International Women’s Day, we are pleased to share the Asherah Foundation 2018 Annual Report. In 2018, the Asherah Foundation awarded scholarships to three inspiring women. We also welcomed six new Executive Board members, incorporated six new Executive Board Committees, and began the process of creating a Junior Board led by former managing intern Arzo Kaderi. This work was supported by 16 incredible interns, and a Scholarship Review Committee composed of 12 experts from around the world. This is a truly global organization, as every continent (except for Antarctica!) and world region is represented by these committed individuals.
Our scholarship applicants represented 34 countries, and were studying everything from banking to urban development, with the majority seeking degrees in the much-needed fields of heathcare, STEM, and education. They ranged from ages 19-49, with two-thirds coming from fragile, or conflict-affected states.
We encourage you to learn more about the amazing individuals involved with the Asherah Foundation by looking through our Annual Report which can be found on the home page of our website, keep reading our blog “Voices” where we share the stories of these women, written by these women, and by following us on social media!
With gratitude for your ongoing support,