USA for UNHCR Supports the UN Refugee Agency

The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) was created in 1950 by the United Nations General Assembly to help over one million European refugees after World War II.  It has continued to provide shelter, food, water, medical care and protection to refugees worldwide.  More than 36 million people have been forced to leave their homes due to war and persecution and UNHCR helps them return to their homes safely when possible or assists with resettlement.  Many of the people UNHCR helps are women and children, who come from over 117 countries.

The UN Refugee Agency’s work is supported by the United States Association for UNHCR (USA for UNHCR).  They work together to build awareness and support in the United States for these life-saving relief programs.

Ludus, with CEO Hamed Wardak, is currently partnered with USA for UNHCR. Through this relationship, they are educating the public about the plight of refugees around the world and raising money to improve refugees’ lives.  Hamed Wardak has thrown several charity events to raise money to provide humanitarian relief to the millions of people whose lives have been devastated by the 2010 Pakistan floods in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh, Punjab and Balochistan regions.

Blue Key: Miami to DC

On June 22, 2011, at the POV at the W Hotel, located at 515 15th Street, Northwest, Washington, D.C, join up with the Blue Key Campaign and the “movers and shakers in support of the UN Refugee Agency as we transform the terrace of the W Hotel into an ultrachic Miami lounge.

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Dance the night away in POV, converted for the night into the hottest club in Washington D.C.  featuring Miami’s own top DJs.”

DJing at the event will be Julian Ingrosso (from Mirami’s Mynt Lounge) as well as Jason Vernau, (current DJ at Set, Shore Club and Fontainebleau).

From 8 to 9pm the host committee reception with VIP guests will take place and then from 9pm to 2am, the Blue Key: Miami to DC at POV.

The event is being sponsored by Ludus Athletics, a company set up and run by Hamed Wardak, earlier this year.

Hamed Wardak and Blue Key

Blue Key: Miami to DC

Through Ludus Athletics (the sports clothing company of which Hamed Wardak is CEO), the Blue Key Campaign is taking place.  The Blue Key Campaign is working together with USA for UNHCR in an effort to “support refugees who are working hard to rebuild their lives.”  Refugees leave with nothing and so need basics like food, water and shelter.  Sometimes they are in camps for decades, hoping that the day they can return to a non-violent country will come very soon.  But while in these harsh conditions, they require the basics which is what The Blue Key Campaign is all about.

Ludus and the Blue Key Campaign

So how does Ludus – a “new South Beach lifestyle brand” – fit into all of this?  The company is all about “fashion, beauty and entertainment,” surely a far cry from the basic needs of these refugees.  But South Beach has another side too, making leaps in developing a healthy environment and supporting large charitable endeavors.  Wardak’s Ludus brand “captures the spirit of all these elements in its apparel,” with a strong commitment to eco-friendly products.  The company’s motto is: “love the world.”

Ludus today is working with a whole slew of “fund-raising events benefitting various charitable endeavors” like USA for UNHCR in an attempt to “educate the public about the plight of refugees around the world and raising money to improve their lives.”

America Comes to Afghanistan…pre-bin Laden’s Demise

Even before Osama bin Laden plunged to his death, it seemed the big Apple may have taken a little trip and landed somewhere soft and cozy in Afghanistan.  Last month, PepsiCo – possibly one of the most American of American companies – set up shop in the country.  It signed “an exclusive deal with the Dubai based Alokozay Group to manufacture and distribute popular PepsiCo beverages such as Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Mountain Dew and 7-UP in Afghanistan.” To render this a reality, the Afghanistan province of Kabul will be home to a $60m beverage bottling plant that is hoped to begin work March of next year.

While the United States of America hasn’t exactly been popular in Afghanistan over the years, things are definitely changing.  With a US presence in the land, there is lots of good news ahead for the average Afghan.  Apart from getting American financial backing for establishments such as school buildings, since the best assistance is when one helps one help themselves, this latest venture of introducing the PepsiCo franchise into Kabul – that is set to directly lead to 800 jobs – has to make America popular in Afghanistan.  For individuals such as Hamed Wardak, who not only work on improving relations between Afghanistan and America but also attempt to enhance the quality of life for Afghans, the franchise and job creation it will lead to is fantastic news.

Afghanistan Education Developments

Afghanistan has developed a lot in recent years, especially in the field of education. This means that it will likely lead to an improved quality of life for the people since the better educated they are, the more job opportunities they are likely to receive.  Such advancement is exactly the kind of activity Hamed Wardak tries to achieve to make life easier and better for Afghans.  Just a couple of weeks ago, in an unprecedented move, Khost, the country’s eastern province officially opened its doors to the Pamir Institute which is the first one of its kind in the province.  Until now it has never had a place offering private higher education. Founded by Profesor Syed Karim Shah Nekmal, the school is to “offer higher education in computer science, language and literature as well as economics.”
As well, there are to be two school buildings constructed in Kapisa, an eastern province of Afghanistan marked by a foundation stone laying ceremony.  The Allah Mohammad Shaheed High School will have six classrooms and one administrative room and the Qari Mir Asman High School will have eight classrooms and four administrative rooms.

Hamed Wardak and Understanding US-Afghan Relations

Hamed Wardak is an Afghan who makes extensive efforts to improve relations between those in his country and America.  So it might be of interest to Mr. Wardak to check out the new Washington D.C. photography exhibition entitled “In Small Things Remembered:  The Early Years of U.S.-Afghan Relations.”  This exhibition is a depiction of “the century-long history of political, cultural, and economic relations between the United States and Afghanistan.”
The exhibition was set up by the Meridian International Center and presents documents and photos which show friendships that begun many years ago between Americans and Afghans.  This includes collaboration between the two with regards to “economic development projects, American artists and Afghan students, visits by political leaders, and community-based development and assistance projects.”
Hamed Wardak is one of the eight founders of the CUASP (Campaign for a US-Afghanistan Partnership).  The vision of the organization is to “achieve sustainable security and prosperity in Afghanistan.”

Developing Afghanistan

Whenever there are any kind of developments in Afghanistan, it has to be good news for the people.  This is exactly the kind of direction that committed individuals like Hamed Wardak are working towards.  So it spelt good news for Wardak and all Afghans on April 15 when the new airport runway was inaugurated in Uruzgan, the country’s central province.  The runway measures 2,250 meters in length and 28 meters in width and cost $28 million, according to a Pajhwok Afghan News (PAN) report.
Since the runway will be linking Urzugan with the rest of the world, this will for sure “boost residents’ economic position considerably,” according to Mohammad Omar Sherzad, Uruzgan’s Governor.  This is great, and even better news is that there are also plans to build other airports in the Badakhstan and Nimroz provinces soon.