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Karamah: Muslim Women Lawyers for Human Rights

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Areas of expertise & Fields of activity:

Economic and Social:
  • Citizenship and Governance
  • Culture
  • Education
  • Family
  • Governance
  • Human Rights
  • Humanitarian Affairs
  • International Law
  • Justice
  • Minority Rights
  • Religion
  • Social Development
  • Women
  • Women/gender Equality

  • Gender Issues and Advancement of Women:
  • Education and training of women
  • Human rights of women
  • Institutional mechanisms for the advancement of women
  • Policy advice
  • The girl child
  • Trafficking in women and girls
  • Violence against women
  • Women and armed conflict
  • Women and poverty
  • Women and the economy
  • Women and the media
  • Women and the media
  • Women in power and decision-making

  • Social Development:
  • Social policy

  • Sustainable Development:
  • Education
  • Gender equality
  • International law
  • Geographic scope: International
    Country of activity:
  • Tunisia
  • Belgium
  • Algeria
  • Morocco
  • Lebanon
  • Bahrain
  • Netherlands
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Malaysia
  • Egypt
  • Jordan
  • United States of America
  • Millennium Development Goals:
  • Promote gender equality and empower women
  • Mission statement:
    Year established:
    Year of registration: 1993
    Organizational structure: The affairs of KARAMAH are managed by the Board of Directors (BoD). Directors are subject to the laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia, KARAMAH’s Articles of Incorporation, and the Bylaws of the Corporation. These laws and documents serve to outline KARAMAH’s organizational structure, as described below. KARAMAH’s BoD is composed of 3 to 15 members, a majority of who must be Muslim women who are either lawyers or Islamic law scholars. KARAMAH currently has 12 directors, 7 of whom are Muslim women lawyers or Islamic law scholars. Nominations for directors are made prior to the annual BoD meeting and are submitted along with the qualifications of the nominee. Nominees are voted on at the annual meeting, and must receive a plurality of the votes cast to be elected as a director. A director then serves a term of 3 years and until her successor is elected and qualified. Regular annual meetings if the BoD are held to conduct business. All meetings of the BoD are presided over by the Chairperson of the BoD or the President. Special meetings of the BoD may be held at the request of the Chairperson, the President, or at least one-third of the BoD. A majority of the whole BoD must be present to achieve quorum. Each director is entitled to only one vote, and all actions taken at a BoD meeting must be passed by a majority of the directors present at the meeting. The directors may be approved to take informal action on behalf of the BoD or a committee; however approval must be given in writing or be recorded in the minutes of the proceedings of the BoD or committee. The BoD may create committees consisting of one or more directors. Committees are empowered to act with the authority of the BoD in the management of KARAMAH’s business and affairs. However, committees do not have the power to adopt, amend, or repeal any Bylaws. There are 9 standing committees. The Executive Committee provides oversight for all of the following committees: Strategic Planning Committee, Finance Committee, Information Technology Committee, Nominations Committee, Development Committee, Human Resources Committee, Scholarship/Leadership Committee, and Community Relations Committee. The BoD also annually appoints officers at regular meetings. An officer holds office until her successor has been appointed and qualified, until her death, until she resigns, or until she has resigned or been removed. The BoD may also appoint, or empower the President or Executive Director to appoint, subordinate officers. Officers may be removed by an affirmative vote of the majority of the BoD at a regular or special meeting or, except in the case of an officer chosen by the BoD, by any officer upon whom such power of removal may be conferred by the BoD. Any director or officer may resign at any time by serving written notice of such resignation to the Chairperson of the BoD, the President, the Executive Director, or the secretary, and do not require action by the BoD to become effective. Currently, officers include Chairperson of the BoD, President, Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary, and Executive Director. The President is empowered to preside at meetings of the BoD when the Chairperson is not present, see that orders and resolutions are carried into effect, act as a representative of the BoD when authorized to do so, and generally perform the usual duties assigned to the office of the President. The Executive Director is the Chief Operating Officer, and has general charge of KARAMAH’s daily affairs. She is also empowered to act as a representative of the BoD when authorized to do so. All other officers have powers and duties usually assigned to their respective offices. The BoD, through the Executive Director, directs KARAMAH’s staff, which is composed of a size and number sufficient to carry out the vision of the BoD and officers of KARAMAH.
    Number and type of members: According to its Bylaws, Karamah “shall have no Members”. However, it has a number of beneficiaries and principals who are stakeholders in the organization and both benefit and guide it. Karamah’s main beneficiaries are the people it serves through its many programs. The primary beneficiary is intended to be the Muslim women leaders and potential leaders. Included in this group are Muslim woman professionals and students, who Karamah provides with education and leadership training opportunities. Also included in the primary beneficiaries are the Muslim women jurists who benefit from Karamah’s Jurist Network, which provides them with a platform for their work as well as networking opportunities. Karamah has educated 123 women through its Law and Leadership Summer Program, who currently receive updates as Law and Leadership Summer Program Alumni. Karamah’s Jurist Network contains approximately 400 Muslim woman jurists. Principals of Karamah include its Board of Directors, Staff, and Interns. Karamah’s Board of Directors and Staff is composed mostly of Muslim women, with the vast majority of leadership positions held by Muslim women. Karamah currently has 12 directors, 7 of whom are Muslim women lawyers or Islamic law experts. Karamah’s Staff is composed of 8 people, the majority of whom are Muslim women. Karamah also hosts approximately 5 unpaid interns per semester.
    Funding structure:
  • Donations and grants from domestic sources
  • Foreign and international grants
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