A Legacy of Giving Back

A Legacy of Giving Back

The reasons Hamid Razavi works with so many local charities.

My interest in working and volunteering for local organizations goes back to my first job after graduation at a center serving the mentally challenged. It was such rewarding work and really exemplified for me, a recently emigrated Iranian-American, the potential of the American dream. I loved witnessing first-hand the power of a community coming together to help the less fortunate. I found the experience incredibly satisfying and vowed then and there to never stop helping others when I found myself in the position to do so.

Volunteering and supporting charities that are important to me has become more than a passion, they have become a lifelong goal, to leave my community a better place long after I am gone. In this blog post, I want to share some of my favorite groups that do amazing work in the hopes others can learn about them and get involved to help them achieve their missions as well.

What is St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital?

One of the greatest charity organizations to which I have been donating is St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Their mission is “to advance cures and means of prevention for pediatric catastrophic diseases through research and treatment consistent with the vision of their founder Danny Thomas, no child is denied treatment based on race, religion, or their family’s ability to pay”.

I have been a regular contributor to their mission and efforts for the last 22 years and will continue their efforts to do their research and to help children who need their help.

Why is Baker Ripley important to the community?

Baker Ripley is a community-based charitable center located in 70 different communities all over the Houston and surrounding areas. Baker Ripley has been serving the community for over a century connecting low-income families and individuals to opportunity so they can achieve the life they’ve imagined. Baker Ripley believes, as I do, that our neighborhoods are bridges to opportunity, people can transform communities, and that everyone everywhere has something to contribute.

My family did an in-kind donation of four acres of land to Baker Ripley to make a beautiful community center in the Gulfton area of Houston, an area called the “Ellis Island of Houston”. The Baker Ripley community center has a library, charter school, community work training center, and has also housed healthcare clinics to provide help for people living in the area.

I had the honor of serving as a board member of the organization for three years and my children spent many summers doing volunteer work in the Gulfton Center. Contributing to this great cause makes me happy and the addition of the community center is a great “hand-up” for the community.

What is the Rose Foundation and what does it do?

The Rose Foundation started in 1986 and since then has become a leading non-profit for mammograms and biopsies and the treatment of breast diseases. The Rose Foundation has even added a diagnostic imaging center to the services they offer women who ordinarily would have no other way of getting regular breast screening.

The Rose Foundation depends on charitable grants, individual and corporate donations, third-party fundraising benefits, and its annual events for its funding. However, the key to the Rose’s sustainability and uniqueness is that patients who can pay for services help offset the costs for those who cannot pay. Since its launch in 1986, The Rose has served nearly 500,000 patients and is now the leading nonprofit breast health care organization in southeast Texas. Board-certified radiologists, specialized technical staff, two Mammography Coaches, and Diagnostic Imaging Centers give access to treatment to more than 40,000 women annually.

Through education and screening, The Rose Foundation has reduced death rates from breast cancer and provided a valuable service to the community. I feel very fortunate to know about this organization and support them.

What is the Society of Iranian American Women for Education?

The Society of Iranian American Women for Education (SIAWE) is one of the oldest Iranian-American-based non-profit organizations in Houston. Originally established by a group of extraordinary caring Iranian-American based in Houston, they provide scholarships and educational help to those who want to pursue their education and require financial help.
SIAWE’s vision is to empower students and the community to acquire, demonstrate, articulate, and value knowledge and skills that will support them, as life-long learners, to participate in and contribute responsibly to the global world.

SIAWE offers opportunities to participate in its realization through financial and in-kind support and volunteerism.

SIAWE’s vision is to empower students and the community to acquire, demonstrate, articulate, and value knowledge and skills that will support them, as life-long learners, to participate in and contribute responsibly to the global world.

To those who share this vision, SIAWE offers opportunities to participate in its realization through financial and in-kind support and volunteerism.

My family has been a major contributor to their cause and sponsor of scholarships provided to those students. SIAWE is a worthy cause that we always support.

What is the ALTUS foundation and what does it do?

I was one of the founding members of the ALTUS Foundation. The Foundation’s help to the community is diversified but its chief purpose is to provide healthcare needs to those who need the assistance. The mission of the ALTUS Foundation is to provide diversified assistance to individuals and families, including but not limited to premium healthcare, financial assistance, food, shelter, and scholarship programs for your entrepreneurs.

To this day, the Altus Foundation has provided over $7 million in healthcare services to individuals in need. The Altus Foundation understands the importance of making sure everyone has access to quality healthcare services. Through their Doctors Giving Time program, they can treat patients without health insurance and who would otherwise not receive the care they need and deserve. The Foundation utilizes ZT Corporate’s unique network of 2,500+ specialized physicians who volunteer their time, technical resources, and funding to achieve one primary objective: save and repair lives.

In many galas held by ALTUS health and ZT wealth, tens of thousands of dollars were raised to meet the foundation’s goal. I am honored to be a founding member and regular contributor to the cause.

What is the Alliance for Multicultural Community Services?

I have been a supporter, board member, and advisory board member of The Alliance for years. The Alliance is a great organization that not only helps to settle new immigrants and refugees but also empowers them to learn English, become educated and find a job.

The Alliance helps the newcomers of many different countries settle in the US and become productive members of the community. Because the organization is a non-profit they require financial help to support their mission.

What is the Iranian- American Medical Association of Texas?

IAMA Texas is a subchapter of the Iranian-American Medical Association of the U.S.A. Throughout the years my family and I have supported this organization to provide scholarships to those Iranian Americans who are qualified and interested in pursuing their education in the United States. Many medical students are given scholarships to follow their dreams. The majority of individuals who have participated in this program have finished their education and are currently contributing their medical skills to the communities they live in.

What is the International Society of Children With Cancer?

The International Society for Children With Cancer is an organization that provides financial helo to children suffering from cancer with minimal financial means available to them. These poverty-stricken children have to go through their treatment process with the help of others. I have has the honor of giving a helping hand to ISCC over the years and encourage others to research the incredible work of this organization.

What is the University of Texas Austin Middle Eastern Studies Department?

The University of Texas Austin is an educational institution that has a very diversified student population. The Department of Middle Eastern Studies offers courses in Persian studies. As a graduate student, I have taken courses and learned a lot from the likes of Dr. Jazayeri and R. Farmayan about Persian history and its impact on the world we live in.

I have also worked at the Middle Eastern library at UT Austin and noticed how the studies research could be enhanced through financial help. I made a contribution as a token of appreciation to those hard-working professors and students interested in enhancing their education on Middle Eastern studies at the University of Texas

What is Encyclopedia Iranica?

A group of over 1000 educators and scholars of Persian history have collaborated for many years to form a foundation to study Iranian culture and history. This comprehensive work covers studies in philosophy, history, geography, folklore, and politics. Many aspects of Persian dynasties throughout history are examined as well. Encyclopedia Iranica began in the 1990s and has helped scholarly work in Persian studies mostly in university settings and cultural studies of Persia. I have been a proud sponsor of Encyclopedia Iranica and its scholarly work.

I encourage everyone to look into these crucial organizations for the betterment of our community. In addition to these groups, I recommend you look into the Foundation for the Children of Iran and the American Diabetes Association as volunteering for these organizations is important as well.

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