International Organizations and Displaced Peoples: UNRWA and Holistic Approaches to Humanitarian Aid

Tuesday, February 27, 2024 6:30 pm to 7:30 pm

The Department of Government and Legal Studies invites you to join us for a talk by Hani Almadhoun, Director of Philanthropy at UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency) USA, on

International Organizations and Displaced Peoples: UNRWA and Holistic Approaches to Humanitarian Aid

  • Tuesday, Feb 27
  • 6:30 pm
  • Kresge, VAC

Hani Almadhoun brings extensive experience in leading fundraising initiatives that support the communities in Gaza and Palestine. In this talk, Almadhoun will share his comprehensive approach to humanitarian aid, shedding light on the concerted international efforts to address the urgent needs in Gaza.

Born in the Emirates, Hani’s family fled to the Gaza Strip in the aftermath of the first Gulf War. His father taught English to refugees at an UNRWA school in Gaza. A child of an educator, Hani was raised with the mantra of school being the top priority, and in this pursuit, he eventually found his way to the United States, thanks to a university scholarship from the LDS Church.

After earning both his BA in International Studies and Latin American Studies and his MA in Public Administration from Brigham Young University, Hani settled in Washington, DC, where he began a career in fundraising. He worked for various causes that spoke to him, including civil rights and social justice groups for Muslim and Arab Americans and charities that serve the Palestinian people and other marginalized communities in the Middle East. Now, after more than a decade in fundraising, Hani brings this experience to his role as UNRWA’s USA Director of Philanthropy.

Within UNRWA USA, Hani helps lead fundraising efforts that support the staff of 14,000 in Gaza providing vital health care, education, employment opportunities, food assistance, and social services. He also plays a pivotal role in high-level discussions, participating in meetings at the White House and the State Department. His engagement directly involves members of the National Security Council and government officials, where he has urged for strategic actions to halt the crisis in Gaza. Hani also co-founded a coalition of Palestinian Americans from Gaza, pivotal in connecting journalists and human rights investigators with eyewitnesses and activists in Gaza. This group facilitated evacuations of Americans stranded in Gaza, transforming from a social initiative on WhatsApp into a powerful tool humanizing Gazan stories.

Open to the public free of charge. Sponsored by the Department of Government and Legal Studies with support from the John C. Donovan Lecture Fund.

For more information, contact Assistant Professor of Government Ángel Saavedra Cisneros at

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