Bernard Center of Columbia University hosts Al-Hakim Foundation
On February 24th 2011 Women Advanced at Bernard Researches Center of Columbia University at New
York hosted the delegation members of Al-Hakim Foundation which include 4 ladies visiting the state
This meeting discussed “the situation of Iraqi women post 2003”
Delegation of the foundation was received and greeted by Dr. Catherin Samah from Bernard center and
Dr. Najam Haider assistance professor of religious studies at Columbia University and many other
professors and researchers at the center.
At the beginning of the event Dr. Jafar Jawad Director of New York office of Al-Hakim Foundation gave a
brief summary about the foundation and its role on helping various segments of Iraqi society and
empowering the role of NGOs in Iraq.
Dr. Jawad described the achievements the foundation gained within short period of time and the
international activities of the foundation at UN and other levels.
Ms. Layla Alkhafaji Director of International relations of Al-Hakim Foundation and former member of Iraqi
Parliament talked about the political participation of Iraqi women after 2003 and the progress achieved
by women in Iraq.
She also explained the most important challenges facing women at recent time and the steps the
government of Iraq should take to empower the women.
Ms. Nawal Al-Ibrahimi a former member of local city council of Al-Najaf in Iraq spoke about the situations
of Iraqi women at grass roexperience from working in the city council.
When the floor was opened to the audience for the questions there were very informative discussions
about many topics such as political situations in Iraq, the constitutions, personal freedom, interfaith
dialogue and many other issues.
The meeting continued for more than 2 hours and was attended by a gathered of teachers professors,
researchers and students from Columbia and Fordham University.
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|The Foundation's Activities at CSW56
Al-Hakim Foundation participated actively in the CSW56 held at UN headquarter, New York Feb. 27 -
March 9, 2012 with the theme of ( Empowerment of Rural Women).
Delegation of the foundation consisted of 8 members from Iraq and USA.
1- First activity was the participation in the Consultation Day
The event took place on Feb. 26 at Salvation Army, NY, where thousands of NGO Representatives from
all over the world gathered in a meeting that was started by a presentation of UN Women EXC. Director
Ms. Mishele Bechelet and it was attended by many UN officials and by Peace Nobel Prize winner,
Leymah Gbowee from Liberia.
The foundation participated in the Regional Panel held at this day through the foundation's Director of
International Relations Ms. Layla Alkafaji where she addressed in her presentation the suffering of Iraqi
women in the past and the achievements they get after the full dictatorial regime.
She also explained the role of civil society and community and religious leaders in Iraq in defending
women rights and gave as example the initiative of Islamic Day of Anti Violence against women which
was declared by the late Iraqi political leader Sayyed Abdull Aziz Al-Hakim.
Consultation Day Video
2- The second activity was the panel sponsored by the foundation on March 1, 2012 at UN Church
Title of the panel: Role of Religious and Cultural Education in Combating Violence against Women.
Dr. Soon Youn : Chair of NGOCSW/NY and Reps. of International Women Alliance at UN.
Layla Alkafaji: Former Iraqi Parliament member and Director of International Relations of Al-Hakim
Dr. Pedi Murthi : Medical Women Alliance
Dr. Abeer Hassoun: Columbia University
Moderator of this panel, Aleq Abdullah, an Iraqi student at Columbia University.
The Foundation's Director of International relations in her presentation talked about the initiative of an
Islamic Day for Anti VAW which was adopted first by Al-Hakim Foundation and then by 22 Faith Based
NGO in Iraq.
She also pointed out the importance of activation of religious and spiritual values in all societies in order
to establish the values of justice and to combat the phenomenon of violence, which is a clear reflection
3- Third activity was the panel held on March 3, 2012 at UNCC. Under the theme:
Iraqi Rural Women from Tragedy of Mass Graves to the participation in building new society.
H.E. Dr. Hamid Al-Bayati : Permanent Representative of Iraq to UN.
Layla Alkafaji: Director of International Relations of Al-Hakim Foundation.
Dr. Nidal Marashi: Ass. Prof. Ocean College
Wafaa Kadim: Women Organization in Iraq.
Moderator of the panel, Dr. Mahdi Abdulla: Ass. Prof. NY University, Medical College.
Dr. Al-Bayati highlighted the reality and situations of rural women in Iraq and the efforts of the Iraqi
government to improve the conditions of rural women at all levels.
Ms. Alkhafaji reviewed the suffering of rural women in Iraq by the criminal policies of the former regime
through the exclusion and marginalization and suffering which included the draining of the marshes and
the mass graves and the deterioration of the reality of the villages and rural areas and poor
infrastructure, poverty and illiteracy.
She also highlighted the hardness and courage of the Iraqi woman and her contributions in keeping the
Iraqi family cohesion and tackling after the fall of the dictator to assume her place in the re-building of
the new society.
Presentation of Ms. Alkhafaji
Statements of Al-Hakim Foundation At CSW56