Interpreting Freedom Foundation

OUR MISSION

Founded in 2018, The Interpreting Freedom Foundation (IFF) is committed to supporting our Afghan Interpreters, allies, and families as they transition to their new life as community members of our United States of America.


WHO WE ARE

We provide comprehensive support services for all US combat interpreters who were engaged in Operation Enduring Freedom. These military and special ops interpreters played a critical role in the battlefield alongside US Armed Forces.



OUR SERVICES

  • PROVIDE FINANCIAL SUPPORT, GIFTS, AND DONATIONS TO FAMILIES OF FALLEN.
  • PARTNER WITH VETERAN SERVICE ORGANIZATIONS TO PROVIDE RESOURCES FOR THOSE SUFFERING FROM PTSD OR OTHER INJURIES SUSTAINED IN SERVICE.
  • COLLABORATE WITH RELIEF ORGANIZATIONS TO ASSIST WITH EMPLOYMENT, EDUCATION, TRANSPORTATION AND HOUSING RESOURCES.
  • PROVIDE GUIDANCE WITH SPECIAL IMMIGRATION VISA PROGRAM AND HELP CONNECT TROOPS WITH INTERPRETERS.
  • ADVOCATE FOR THE NEEDS OF INTERPRETERS TO THE U.S FEDERAL GOVERNMENT.

OUR PROGRAMS

Advocacy – Government Affairs (GA)

  • Help navigating the Visa process
  • Apply political pressure for the establishment of Afghan refugee camps within border nations of Afghanistan to be utilized for the extraction of Afghan more Interpreters

Housing

  • Connect with other organizations which will help provide housing
    • Short term, 1 to 90 days (Transitory)
      • Hotel Points
    • Long Term, 91 days to 2 years (Housing)
  • Furniture
  • Utilities (Start Services – Deposits)

Jobs / Skills Training

  • Western Cultural Orientation
  • Resume Building
  • Drivers Licensing / State issued ID Card
  • Connect with other organizations which will help provide Jobs / and skills
    • Lyft / Uber Training
    • CDL Training
    • Maintenance training
    • IT Training

Community Relations

  • Community Service
  • Afghan to Afghan Support
  • Operation Connect Vet
    • Connect Afghan interpreters with the U.S. Service members they served with
      • Secondary effect, it helps address matters of PTSD and reduce suicide rates

Basic Life Support

  • Interpreter assistance when needed
  • Food
  • Toiletries 
  • Household goods
  • Clothes
  • Childcare Products
  • Transportation Support

MEDIA


This photo was taken in the Office of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff inside the Pentagon on the day that Zia and Blade along with the other members of Special Forces Operational Detachment (ODA) 3336 were recognized for their participation and sacrifice at the the Battle of Shok Valley, Afghanistan.


OUR IMPACT

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Vehicles Provided
0
Temporary & Permanent Housing Units Secured
0
Job Placements Facilitated

ONE OF OUR RECENT WELCOME EVENTS FOR OUR AFGHAN ALLIES


OUR STORY

ALONE WE CAN DO SO LITTLE, TOGETHER WE CAN DO SO MUCH
WE STARTED WITH A GOAL, TO BUILD A COMMUNITY OF SUPPORT TO HELP INTERPRETERS AND THEIR FAMILIES IN THE TIME OF NEED.
THE FOLLOWING ARE ONE OF THE MANY TRAGIC STORIES THAT INSPIRED THE IDEA OF FOUNDING AN ORGANIZATION THAT WOULD ADVOCATE FOR THE NEEDS OF INTERPRETERS AND HELPS PREVENT SUCH TRAGEDIES FROM REOCCURRING.
IFF CO-FOUNDER BAHROZ MOMAND (BLADE) SERVED AS A SPECIAL FORCES INTERPRETER IN AFGHANISTAN FOR 9 YEARS AND WAS ABLE TO RESETTLE WITH HIS FAMILY IN CALIFORNIA, USA IN DECEMBER 2012 THROUGH THE SPECIAL IMMIGRATION VISA. IN JANUARY 2013 HE STRUGGLED TO FIND A LOCATION TO PEACEFULLY LAY TO REST HIS BABY WHO HAD NOT SURVIVED CHILDBIRTH. HE DID NOT KNOW WHERE TO TURN. FINDING ASSISTANCE WAS AN IMPOSSIBLE TASK. AFTER NUMEROUS UNANSWERED PHONE CALLS, DEAD-ENDS AND FINDING LITTLE SUPPORT FROM THE GOVERNMENT AND OTHER RELIEF ORGANIZATIONS.
TRAGEDIES LIKE THESE BROUGHT TOGETHER A SMALL GROUP OF INTERPRETERS WHO TALKED AND SHARED COUNTLESS STORIES OF INTERPRETERS WHO ARE STRUGGLING TO SURVIVE WITH VERY LIMITED RESOURCES. IN RESPONSE, THE GROUP DECIDED TO TAKE ACTION. AS A RESULT, INTERPRETING FREEDOM FOUNDATION WAS BORN.
THE IDEA WAS TO FIND A WAY TO LET INTERPRETERS KNOW THAT THEY ARE NOT ALONE AND THEY HAVE SOMEWHERE TO TURN. THE OBJECTIVE WAS TO CREATE A REAL, COMPREHENSIVE COMMUNITY OF SUPPORT FROM THOSE WHO HAVE BEEN THERE AND EXPERIENCED FIRST-HAND WHAT THEY HAVE BEEN THROUGH. SINCE THOSE EARLY CONVERSATIONS, THE FOUNDERS HAVE BROADENED THEIR GOALS TO INCLUDE A PROVISION OF FINANCIAL SUPPORT, COUNSELING SERVICES, EMPLOYMENT RESOURCES, HELP WITH SPECIAL IMMIGRANT VISA APPLICATIONS, AND ADVOCATING FOR VETERAN’S BENEFITS TO HELP OFFSET THE DAILY BURDEN EXPERIENCED BY INTERPRETERS WHO HAVE RELOCATED THEIR FAMILIES.
STRONG PEOPLE STAND UP FOR THEMSELVES, BUT THE STRONGEST PEOPLE STAND UP FOR EACH OTHER
THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE INTERPRETING FREEDOM FOUNDATION AND OTHER ORGANIZATIONS IS THAT IT IS A GRASSROOTS MOVEMENT CREATED BY HIGHLY DECORATED MILITARY INTERPRETERS WHO HAVE ALL SERVED DIRECTLY IN COMBAT AND SUCCESSFULLY RELOCATED TO THE UNITED STATES. THEIR FIRST-HAND EXPERIENCE AND KNOWLEDGE OF THE SITUATION MAKE THEM UNIQUELY QUALIFIED TO UNDERSTAND THE PROCESS AND THEIR UNITED EFFORTS ARE DESIGNED TO HELP OTHERS WHO ARE IN NEED.


PRESS

(FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) – U.S. troops will be out of Afghanistan by the end of August. Now, there’s a big push to make sure the people who risked their lives to help U.S. troops will make it to safety as well. It’s a big challenge in a short amount of time.

Now, a man is helping to make sure those Afghan interpreters can make it out alive.

“I used to work with the U.S. Army Special Forces for 14 years,” Ziaulhaq Ghafoori told FOX 46. https://myfox8.com/news/former-translator-for-u-s-troops-in-afghanistan-working-around-the-clock-to-get-other-interpreters-to-the-u-s/

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) – Several local organizations in Charlotte are gearing up to assist refugees from Afghanistan.

It’s work they have done for years, but the past few weeks have been their busiest as they have been in communication with people trying to escape Kabul.

https://www.wbtv.com/2021/08/31/afghanistan-natives-living-charlotte-working-with-volunteer-groups-help-refugees/?outputType=apps

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — WCNC Charlotte learned that at least 20 Afghan families will arrive in Charlotte, fleeing the Taliban’s invasion in Afghanistan.

An event to welcome those who have already arrived was held at Reedy Creek Park on Saturday, organized by the Save Our Allies coalition. The coalition is made up of The Independence Fund and the Mighty Oaks Foundation. Together, the two groups helped evacuate 12,000 Afghans. The next goal is to help them resettle.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — As U.S. troops pull out of Afghanistan, a Charlotte man is worried about the Taliban killing hundreds of translators who helped U.S. and coalition forces during the war.

Zia Ghafoori is a former Afghan interpreter. He worked with the U.S. Army Special Forces for 14 years during the war in Afghanistan.

“We were on the frontlines fighting against all those Taliban and Al Qaeda,” Ghafoori said. “I found a brotherhood between my teammates.” https://spectrumlocalnews.com/nc/charlotte/news/2021/07/28/former-afghan-interpreter-fights-to-get-other-translators-to-the-u-s–#

The photographs of an Afghan interpreter in a U.S. military uniform helping American troops remain fresh in the mind of N.C. House Speaker Tim Moore.

He met the interpreter over the summer through a North Carolina-based nonprofit, Interpreting Freedom Foundation.

https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article253821153.html

Former Afghan interpreter and translator for the US military, Zia Ghafoori, is still working around the clock to help as many people as possible avoid that scenario. Ghafoori is now in the US and has been helping to organize evacuation flights for translators who also worked with the US in Afghanistan. https://www.pri.org/stories/2021-08-30/theyre-depending-us-afghan-interpreter-scrambles-help-evacuate-colleagues?fbclid=IwAR0786I-x1UPXUqtWTr5GBpiH5GUgk7ptY3tMRQtnutWq_ZJePek3gsq_64

HOW YOU CAN HELP


Your generous contribution helps us provide comprehensive support services for all US combat interpreters who were engaged in Operation Enduring Freedom. These military and special ops interpreters played a critical role in the battlefield alongside US Armed Forces; many of whom have lost everything and have had their lives shattered after emergency evacuation. Here are the ways you can make a direct impact on the lives of these incredible men and their families:

The Interpreting Freedom Foundation is a registered 501(c)3 organization and your donation is tax deductible.

EIN: 831204288

CONTACT US

FOR MORE INFORMATION – TO VOLUNTEER – FOR MEDIA REQUESTS – PLEASE FILL OUT THE FORM BELOW OR E-MAIL US AT: info@interpretingfreedom.org

THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!

SHARING THIS WEBPAGE & FOLLOWING US ON SOCIAL MEDIA ARE TWO OF THE MOST IMPORTANT WAYS YOU CAN HELP MAKE AN IMPACT