The Noor Family Service’s “Gratitude Gala” that took place on November 10th, was an elegant and festive gathering that took place to recognize and give back to many generous individuals and organizations that have dedicated time, resources, or have simply supported NFS in the past, and have played a critical role in helping the organization reach where it has today.
Noor Family Service’s mission is to “help strengthen and foster healthy families and promote a shifting of cultural norms that can be misused to perpetuate domestic violence” and to “fill a need in the community for confidential, culturally-sensitive services and assistance to immigrant/refugee communities experiencing crises due to family violence and abuse”. Over the past four years, the organization has grown immensely, serving more and more clients each year, and does so in a variety of areas. In addition to collaborating with local shelters and distributing food, NFS has offered pro-bono legal services, food and hygiene supplies, assistance with resumes and job-finding, support group sessions, transportation, financial assistance, and childcare.
At the gala, speaker Fakiha Khan highlighted many of the organization’s client services, such as back-to-school drives and Eid gifts collections for children. Khan also touched on their Grief Recovery program- an intensive program that allows survivors to deal with their trauma in a manner similar to those who have lost a loved one. She explained that “[They] wanted to make sure that we provide all of the services that our clients need in order to be both mentally and physically safe”. Additionally, she spotlighted NFS’s mission to “go out and change norms” through educational outreach with refugee communities, opening up the conversation to the cultural nuances individuals may have been raised with, unbeknownst to them, that later may lead to issues with family violence within immigrant and refugee families.
Judge Traci Carson then delivered the keynote speech, sharing the inspirational story behind her decision to pursue her career in public service. She described the example her father set for her through his daily actions, reminding her to be dedicated and steadfast when working towards her goals, and kind in her treatment of other people. She tied in her story with the year’s theme, expressing her gratitude to her parents for their support and guidance.
Towards the end of the event, Chama Ibrahim, the executive director of Noor Family Services, and Zareen Hassan, a member of the organization’s board of directors, then recognized and presented heartwarming gifts to many of NFS’s community partners, volunteers, and staff for their dedication towards “ending the cycle of violence” and “expanding [the] reach and strengthening [the] programs and services”. Lastly, the organization emphasized their mission to grow and be of service to even more people in the years to come, and once again thanked the attendees for their continuous support of NFS.