About

by | Jul 13, 2020

Arab America Foundation

The Arab America Foundation (AAF) is a non-profit (501c3) educational and cultural organization established in 2019. The mission of AAF is to promote the Arab heritage and empower Arab Americans, educate Americans about the Arab identity, and to connect Arab Americans together (socially and professionally) and build coalitions with diverse organizations across the U.S.

One hundred years ago, the Arab American writer, poet, and philosopher, Kahlil Gibran, created an organization known as Al Rabitah–The Connection. The movement engaged writers, journalists, and artists to promote and preserve the Arab Heritage. Tragically, the Al Rabitah movement ceased shortly after Gibran’s death.

One hundred years later, we at AAF, inspired by Gibran’s dream, seek to continue his work to promote the Arab heritage.

Need

The negative and maligned image directed against Arab Americans in the U.S., heightened hate crimes, and bigotry, all, have created an urgency to dispel the negative images, which are causing anguish amongst Arab Americans. There is a need to provide a narrative which is non-biased and accurate. There is a sense of urgency to build a systematic and comprehensive campaign to celebrate the Arab heritage, enhance understanding (through education), and connect Arabs across America and with other diverse other organizations.

Identity

Nearly four million Americans trace their roots to an Arab country. Arab Americans are found in every state, but more than two thirds of them live in just eleven states: California, Michigan, New York, Florida, Texas, New Jersey, Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and Washington DC.

Arab Americans are diverse ethically, religiously, and politically. For this reason, there are over 1,500 political, religious, and ethnic organizations representing the diverse Arab American population. As a result and to some extent, Arabs in America are divided, with no cohesive identity.