One Hundred Years of Service: How the Birds’ Nest Orphanage has Changed Lives for a Century

In November 2018, the Near East Foundation Board of Directors made a trip to Lebanon to visit NEF’s active programs. After an eventful week of visiting Near East Foundation project sites, individuals helped by NEF programs, and meeting with beneficiaries and community leaders and partners, the Board had the opportunity to visit the Birds’ Nest, 98 years after it was first purchased by Near East Relief.

The New Near East – February 1920

For the month of February, 1920, the New Near East Magazine followed Ernest Yarrow as he took a tour of the operating districts in the Near East. In stark contrast to Yarrow’s glowing reviews of Near East Relief operations, are the photos and stories of the true plight of the refugees and children who called NER orphanages home. This juxtaposition shows how much work NER had done by 1920 and just how much more there was to do in the future.


The New Near East Magazine – January 1920

The New Near East, a magazine published starting in January of 1920, was crucial for engaging the American people in Near East Relief efforts. The stunning, and often heartbreaking photos, allowed for people a world away to see the plight of the Armenian people, and served as a critical tool for encouraging the life-saving citizen donations that changed the lives of so many refugees and children.

Consular Legacies, Part Two: U.S. Diplomatic Records from Persia Show a Nation Buffeted by Stronger Powers and American Support for Persecuted Minorities

The diplomatic records available paint a picture of the pivotal role played by US diplomats and consular officers during and after the genocide. Blessed with a variety of resources, diplomats were able to provide humanitarian aid, advocate on the behalf of persecuted minorities, and encourage a peaceful solution to end the ongoing and violent conflict in the region. NERHS is excited to continue its collaboration with James David as we explore the Persian emissaries and diplomatic consulates more in depth.

Mass Entertainment: An Exploration of Toys and Games in Near East Relief Orphanages

Near East Relief, while limited greatly by resources and the types of donations it received, did everything in its power to ensure that the children in its care were cared for in every way imaginable, including providing them with what toys they could as well as the opportunity to explore their own creativity and expression in the form of games, physical activity, building, art, music, and so much more.

A Forgotten Ally, Part One: Reverend Wirt and Viscount Shibusawa

The work done by the Japanese people, spearheaded by Rev. Wirt and Visc. Shibusawa, provided much needed aid to the Armenian people. Without this international support, Near East Relief would not have been able to help as many refugees as it did. Special thanks to NERHS contributing scholar, Vicken Babkenian, for providing the information and photographs for this dispatch.