iACT provides humanitarian action to aid, empower, and extend hope to those affected by mass atrocities.
WHY WE ACT
To create a world where people are connected and equipped to act. iACT is a hands-on leader empowering those affected by mass atrocities to live healthier and more dignified lives. Through advocacy and on-the-ground change, we provide the tools and training necessary to create a new culture of participation for people responding to and facing humanitarian crises globally.
In 2005, iACT Founding Executive Director Gabriel Stauring visited his first Darfuri refugee camp, located on the Chad-Sudan border. Stauring’s goal was to collect the stories of survivors of the Darfur genocide, then share them with individuals, the international community, and governmental actors in order to inspire action. The trip, intended to be his first and only, turned into visits taken two to three times every year, as well as a new path in life.
Over the next several years following that first trip, Gabriel built a strong group of volunteer team members who became personally connected to the Darfuri refugees, such as Adam, Fatna, Achta, and Guisma, and who were dedicated to supporting iACT’s trips, programs, and campaigns through their unique and diverse sets of skills and expertise. Gabriel traveled the U.S. with iACT’s first exhibit, Camp Darfur, educating communities and inspiring them to take part in nationally coordinated campaigns.
In 2007, Katie-Jay Scott, iACT’s current Chief Operating Officer, joined the iACT team and the full-time staff size doubled. Driven by their passion to provide support for individuals and communities affected by mass atrocities, Katie-Jay and Gabriel formalized iACT in 2009. Building upon years of listening to refugees and observing the refugee context in eastern Chad, iACT began to focus on filling gaps in humanitarian response and on improving the ways to create and implement programs with refugee populations.
This model begins with the beneficiary community identifying its own needs. Once identified, iACT conducts research on current solutions, models of success, failures, philosophies, and resources. We then form a team of diverse experts, and in partnership with refugee beneficiaries, begin building a framework around a possible community-driven solution. iACT refuses to accept the status quo of humanitarian aid and services for displaced communities. Instead, we begin with the assumption that anything can be delivered or implemented, and, placing the community at the center, we look outside the box to create solutions that use the environmental limitations as assets rather than obstacles. Through a process of testing and iterations, a program is eventually shaped and molded to be the most effective for that community.
Today, iACT is an international organization pioneering processes, programs, and education campaigns to improve the humanitarian refugee response around the globe. iACT is about action and empowerment inspired through personal relationships. Teamwork is at the heart of our change model. We collaborate with experts and organizations across different sectors, and, most importantly, the refugee beneficiaries, in order to design and implement education, sports, and human rights solutions at the forefront of humanitarian efforts.