FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 15, 2020 | Scottsdale, Arizona | Download PDF

IRANIAN AMERICAN SOCIETY OF ARIZONA AWARDED CARES ACT EMERGENCY RELIEF - HUMANITIES GRANT FROM ARIZONA HUMANITIES

As part of CARES Act Emergency Relief - Humanities Grant fund, Iranian American Society of Arizona (IASAz) has received a grant from Arizona Humanities on May 15,2020.

Arizona Humanities provided rapid-response funding to non-profit humanities and cultural organizations facing financial hardship from the COVID19 pandemic. These grants are funded by the Congressional CARES Act through the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH).

The IASAz board and our members are largely immigrants and minorities, many of Iranian descent. Our members came to the United States for a better life, some of us as refugees. Many of our members are elderly and for some English is a second or even third language. In addition to programming in English for all, we have programs in the Persian language for these members. The center provides a space for them to congregate and enjoy each other's company for moral and social support. Our pro-grams, events, exhibitions, lectures and activities are typically held at the Arizona Persian Cultural Center (AZPCC) in Old Town Scottsdale.

On March 11, in the interest of public health we closed AZPCC to the public because of the COVID19 pandemic. As a result, our organization has suspended all one-time and recurring in person programming events at AZPCC. This has been a hardship for our organization. Events at AZPCC are the primary method of fundraising for the organization. COVID-19 has caused 30% reduction in our membership base, due to financial hardships of our members. The loss of membership dues also strained our organization’s resources. The loss of revenues due to COVID-19 have made it very difficult to meet on-going operational costs such as rent, maintenance, insurance, IT costs and the like.

IASAz has increased its online presence adapted programs for home-based audiences, postponed programs, postponed fundraising events and adapted its fundraising strategies.To meet the needs of our community with the challenge of COVID-19, the organization established a local food bank to ensure this pandemic does not cause hunger in our communities. IASAz also created a small grant pool with community funds to provide financial assistance to those directly affected by COVID19 and its economic hardship.

Due to generosity of Arizona Humanities and National Endowment for Humanities, for the next three months AZPCC projects and operational expenses are funded and supported.

For more information about both of these organizations please visit them on social media.

For further information from IASAz, please contact Saman Golestan, Communications Director, saman@iasaz.org

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