Relief International has been active in Iran since 1990. In 2004, it scaled up its programming in response to the devastation caused by the Bam earthquake, in which approximately 26,000 people lost their lives and 90% of the city was destroyed. In the immediate aftermath of the disaster, Relief International responded to families' basic needs by distributing essential food and non-food items such as milk for children, dietary staples, blankets, and hygiene kits for women. As the response transitioned from relief to rehabilitation and development, Relief International's response also evolved. By the end of 2005, Relief International had constructed permanent housing for 845 families, established two fully staffed health clinics, and built a Community Education and Cultural Center to serve all community members.

Since its initial presence in Iran, Relief International's teams followed the organization's signature "short-term aid to long-term development" approach as efforts gradually shifted toward rehabilitation efforts that enabled the improvement of Iranian livelihoods-especially for women and children. In the wake of a series of tragic natural disasters, thousands of women are left without husbands, and have neither power nor income. Today, Relief International offers a Rural Women's Microcredit Program, which provides mothers, grandmothers and daughters with the opportunity to generate income and achieve economic stability for themselves and their families.

Relief International is proud to be the holder of a Treasury Department OFAC License (#IA-2012-296722-1).

To view testimonies from recipient families, please view this short video:


Iran - Current Programs

Rural Women's Microcredit Program
Relief International's Rural Women's Microcredit Program in some of the most rural and impoverished provinces facilitates women's empowerment and financial independence by providing loans of up to $250 per family. Learn More...