March 27, 2013
/PRNewswire/ -- Three years after it was founded overseas, the
Philippe Hatem Foundation for a Happy Childhood (PHF)
will launch in America. The Foundation, which will be known as the
Philippe Hatem Foundation for a Happy Childhood, America
, was created to honor the life and untimely death of 11 year old
and help improve the lives of children in need all over the world.
It has already begun programs helping children in areas as diverse as
, and its native
. These programs include caring for street children, abused children, and giving grants for medical and welfare needs as well as educational scholarships. There are also unique recreational programs including one that uses dance to bring kids together.
Their most recent work has been to partner with UNICEF to provide emergency clothing items for Syrian refugee children who have fled to neighboring
The foundation was started by Philippe's father, Lebanese businessman
to transform what was an unfathomable personal tragedy into something inspiring, compassionate, and impactful. Among those who immediately joined
in his mission was fellow Lebanese born designer
and acclaimed dance pioneer
– founder of "Dancing Classrooms."
Having had success helping children in other regions of the world, the PHF decided it was time to launch in
the United States
. They will be deciding on projects to fund during the spring and summer of 2013, and it will be followed by a fundraising gala event at the end of the year.
"Philippe was such an extraordinary young child, and so wise and compassionate for his age. Our programs are designed to help children less fortunate who are battling some of the world's most difficult conditions. Me and my team are committed to doing whatever it takes in all parts of the world to empower local and global initiatives in order to strengthen their future, one smile at a time," says Mr. Hatem.