The Qatar Katrina Fund was established September 2005 to provide direct assistance to people and institutions in most dire need in the wake of the storm. Gifts were committed to healthcare, education and housing. The Fund’s first phase of donations, totaling more than $61 million, was announced on May 2, 2006 and included grants to rebuild homes, financial assistance to provide medical care, and university scholarships – all reserved for victims of Katrina.
The second phase, representing $33 million in gifts announced on September 8, 2006, targeted the hardest hit areas of Mississippi and Louisiana and commemorated the one-year anniversary of the hurricane.
The third phase, announced on January 8, 2007, of more than $5 million brought the total commitment to the $100 million.
Our Giving Strategy
Everyone hurt or displaced by Hurricane Katrina is equally important. All deserve our compassion and care. Choosing where to direct the Qatar Katrina Fund among thousands of worthy organizations was a difficult task, and we were determined that our giving strategy would be goal oriented and transparent. We set several goals.
Our focus was on housing, health care, and education – all essential needs that had to be restored as quickly as possible.
We sought out strong local partners to plan and execute the projects funded by this gift.
We looked for projects that could bring immediate help to the Katrina victims – but also “multiplier effects” like jobs, training, and community service opportunities to support a lasting recovery.
We wanted the Qatar Katrina Fund to target those who were unlikely to be helped through the many other sources of assistance made available by governments and charities.
And finally, because transparency is so important, we engaged PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP to provide independent monitoring of the Qatar Katrina Fund and all of the funded projects.
Embassy of the State of Qatar in Washington DC
Qatar is an independent state in the Southern Arabian Gulf. The relationship between Qatar and the United States is reciprocal: Qatar is home to many Americans, and the United States is both Qatar’s largest foreign investor and its largest source of imports. Qatar’s expanded global economic reach is evident in increased investments in the United States, which have created thousands of jobs across America. These include partnerships with numerous American companies, such as Exxon Mobil, ConocoPhillips, and Raytheon, and real estate investments, such as the revitalization project CityCenterDC in Washington, DC. Qatar is also a close ally of the United States and an advocate of building a peaceful and prosperous Middle East. In 1992, the two countries signed a comprehensive defense cooperation agreement, and Qatar is host to the Al Udeid Air Base, a key operational center for US forces in the region. Qatar places great emphasis on education. Doha’s expansive Education City is home to branch campuses of six prestigious US universities: Carnegie Mellon, Georgetown, Northwestern, Texas A&M, Virginia Commonwealth, and Weill Cornell. All of these offer degree programs identical to those on their US campuses, and attract students from across the Middle East and around the world. Their presence has brought a culturally rich and diverse expatriate community to Qatar and has augmented ties to the United States.