jumpstart for refugees – OUR FIRST U.S. BASED PROGRAM!

There are currently 5.6 million Syrian refugees worldwide.

The U.S. has admitted around 21,000 Syrian refugees. That is less than 1 percent of the global Syrian refugee population. Karam Foundation is committed to providing Smart Aid for Syrian families that have been resettled in the United States and equipping them with the support they need in order to become contributing members of their local host communities. Jumpstart for Refugees is Karam Foundation's deep impact, US community-driven response.

Help us "jumpstart" the lives of Syrian refugee families in the US – learn how you can support families today!





Car program

Driven families, often emotionally and physically isolated need help helping themselves with purchasing of vehicles and car insurance and getting their driver's license.

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Job and Education Advancement 

Support for job and vocational training certification as well as higher educational opportunities.


Emergency Assistance on a Needs Basis

Families sometimes run into severe circumstantial difficulties such as low income housing eviction, legal and other immediate financial crises.


Referrals to Specialized community networks or Organizations 

Often individuals are in need of basic introductions into new social circles, providing a foundation of acceptance and tolerance.

How you can make a difference


GIVE KARAM: Your support will open doors for newly resettled Syrian refugee families – equipping them with the tools and resources they need in order to build successful futures in their new home

get involved!

YOU CAN: employ a Syrian refugee, connect a family to a job training or certification, advanced ESL courses and/or scholarship opportunities, expand community networks for families in the areas of resettlement and more! 

NEEDS ASSESSMENT: Are you or somebody you know in need of assistance? Are you a Syrian refugees in the United States, recent Syrian asylee in the last 9 months or Green Card holder, or have experienced TPS status disruption. If so, please fill out this form.

Announcing our latest programS: Youth programs and Disability!

Responding to the strong need of families to enhance community relations and integration into American society, we have expanded our community programs to include youth, disability and women empowerment initiatives.

youth programs

  • Enables access for families and children to better integrate into their communities

  • Outlet for mental, emotional and psychosocial support

  • Less burden on children for family support

  • Children continue educational support outside of school (eg scholarships)

  • 8 recurring awarded scholarships for the Chicago Skokie AYSO regional futbol league and more!


  • Modifications to transportation barriers due to physical impairment allows navigation with more accessibility and feasibility

  • Increases inclusivity

  • 1 disability and handicapped accessible van for a family previously supported through our SSRF program!

We are so grateful for the support we have received to help alleviate the burdens we face. We also hope to get more community support. With a car, our daughter Yildiz was able to find a better work opportunity that is not only close to home, but also does not require her to work odd hours. With Karam’s continuous support, Yildiz is now on track to pursuing her degree in Phlebotomy in order to become a Medical Assistant, making sure her previous educational qualifications from Syria translate correctly.

We know it will take time, but at least some things are now becoming easier to manage after being away from our home, stretched over miles and time.

Where we're working

There are 21,000 Syrian refugees in the U.S. – the refugee crisis has expanded beyond the borders of Syria and its neighboring countries. These are our neighbors, classmates, they are people in need looking for opportunities to rebuild their lives and build a promising future for their children. We may not be able to end the war, but we can make a difference. Our Jumpstart program currently supports over 35 families across 8 states, including: Washington, Oregon, Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Massachusetts

Over 100 individuals have gained steps toward social and economic mobility by getting their driver's license, finding advantageous job training opportunities, living in safer and cost effective housing, attending advanced English courses and youth programs, accessing essential community networks and more!

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access and opportunity can make a direct impact

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With a car, families are able to gain access to better job opportunities, enroll and attend English language acquisition courses. Having a car also leads to successful social integration and community engagement. Getting on your own two feet starts with community inclusivity, a "jumpstart" to acclimation. Being able to access available resources and opportunities will allow motivated individuals to provide for their families and contribute to their new community. 

Driving is universal. We want to learn right away, get better jobs, improve our English and rebuild our lives for our families.
Now that we have a car, there is greater opportunity to rebuild our lives and improve our situation. We can finally move forward!

thank you to our supporters!

Chelsea Handler has sponsored the education of dozens of Syrian refugee children for more than a year now, helping stabilize Syrian refugee families living in Turkey so that their children do not have to work, and can instead access a quality education. In the last few months, Chelsea's generosity has extended to support Syrian families that had recently been resettled in the United States. In May 2017, comedian, talkshow host, and best-selling author, Chelsea Handler made a generous contribution to Karam Foundation's pilot Jumpstart program for Syrian refugees, allowing us to provide transportation assistance and overall support to over 17 Syrian refugee families in the U.S. resettled Syrian families across 8 states. Our assistance program for refugee families in the U.S. evolved from our Smart Aid philosophy – providing what is needed to those who need it by asking one simple question: What do you need? Stay tuned for more updates!