Catholic Near East Welfare Association is a 501 (c) (3) corporation and an agency of the Holy See that provides humanitarian and pastoral support to the churches and peoples of the Middle East, Northeast Africa, India and Eastern Europe.
CNEWA works with and through the churches of the East to build the church, help the poor and promote understanding, justice and peace.
All our work is grounded in the vision that we are believers in one God, citizens of one world and members of one human family. Although we’re a Catholic agency, we serve all people, regardless of religion. Our only criterion is need not creed.
Founded by Pope Pius XI in 1926, CNEWA continues its special mission under the guidance of Pope Francis.
For more than a thousand years, the mountains and valleys of Lebanon have sheltered minorities — Christians, Druze and Shiites. CNEWA works with all to determine and prioritize community needs: we build homes, clinics and classrooms; restore village agricultural infrastructure; secure low interest loans for small businesses; provide care to impoverished children; and support the education and formation of priests, sisters and lay leaders.
Kathy Feghali was born in Beirut but now lives near Washington, D.C. As Lebanon suffered from the effects of war over the years, Kathy grieved for her homeland.
“It wasn’t only the horrors of the war that broke my heart,” she said. “It was the number of people packing and leaving.” Kathy chose not to despair. Instead, she joined with nine other Lebanese-American residents of Washington to create Education and Opportunities for Lebanon (E.O.L.).
E.O.L. partners with CNEWA to support schools and projects. “The idea is to educate children and offer them some opportunity to stay. That's what we’re working on — that’s education and opportunity,” explained Kathy.
CNEWA has been helping children since it was founded in 1926. Right now, there are thousands of children in Lebanon waiting for sponsors.
Who is a needy child sponsor? A needy child sponsor is someone who cares deeply enough to provide regular financial support through CNEWA to orphans and children who are most in need. For just $25 a month, we provide shelter, clothing, food — the basic necessities — and in most cases “our kids” are given religious instruction too. People become sponsors for different reasons, but many say they receive “a priceless joy” from helping God’s little ones.