Farzin Farzad

Farzin Farzad (Association for the Defense of Azerbaijani Political Prisoners in Iran - ADAPP): Farzin is a native Azerbaijani speaker who spent the early years of his life in Iran and Turkey. He graduated in 2005 with a B.A. in political science from McDaniel College with a concentration in international studies and a minor in cross-cultural studies. He then went on to earn a graduate degree in International Affairs from American University in December of 2008. His regional focus was the Middle East, particularly Iranian security. During his undergraduate and graduate studies, Farzin held positions in research and analysis with professors at Johns Hopkins SAIS and Columbia University. As a research intern at the East-West Center, he researched for and helped edit a book on nuclear weapons security in Asia. During the summer of his graduate program, Farzin studied the political history of the Gulf States at the University of Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates. After his fellowship, Farzin wrote: “Ironically, I am more assertive person. Being a 'Peace' Fellow toughened me up.”



ADAPP as an organization

28 Jul

I wanted to take some time to discuss ADAPP as an organziation to dispell many of the rumors that have been placed throughout the internet questioning ADAPP, its activities and its funding. First off, I want to reiterate that ADAPP is a human rights organization and all of its work goes to education of and advocacy on behalf of Azerbaijani political prisoners and activists. It is a registered non-profit in British Columbia which means that it has to follow British Columbia’s guidelines. Therefore ADAPP has a board, president, executive director and bylaws, which mirror the BC non-profit organization suggested bylaws.  It has tax-exempt status in BC.

Currently, ADAPP is in the process of applying for charitable status and we are restructuring to do so. With charitable status, ADAPP can issue tax receipts for its donations. A requirement for this is that 80% of ADAPP’s funding that is received under its charitable account must go to education and only 20% is reserved for other expenses such as overhead and advocacy. Fakhteh is the Executive Director of ADAPP, but not a member of the board of directors. She heads a working group, which including myself, are mostly Iranian Azerbaijanis, with a few Canadian and American human rights volunteers.

Furthermore, ADAPP boasts a 6-member board, headed by newly-elected president Margaret Morgan, who are all current members of Amnesty International in Canada, neither of whom are Azerbaijanis. Now to those who think ADAPP has questionable activities: a board of Amnesty members would hardly allow this organization to participate in pan-Turkic activities. Every position on the board is completely volunteer.

As for funding, ADAPP receives a nominal amount from human rights organizations. Other funding comes from donations and membership fees. To be honest, a lot of the organization’s expenses have come from Fakhteh’s own pockets. ADAPP operates on a very tight and small budget. At this point, Fakhteh and I, have been involved in grantwriting to various funds to receive money for some future educational projects that we hope will raise awareness on racism in Iran.

Posted By Farzin Farzad

Posted Jul 28th, 2009

3 Comments

  • Andrea

    August 2, 2009

     

    Haystack is a new program to provide unfiltered internet access to the people of Iran. A software package for Windows, Mac and Unix systems, called Haystack, specifically targets the Iranian government’s web filtering mechanisms.

    http://www.haystacknetwork.com/donate/

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