ZAM’s Hope is the vision and creation of Zehra Quadri, a single mother who discovered first-hand the lack of services available to immigrant women in Chicago, especially on the north side. As she worked through the cultural stigma of divorce and struggled to make ends meet for herself and her two daughters, she also began planning how she would help others who were experiencing similar problems. At first, Zehra began offering emergency services from her home, using her own resources and supported by local donors.
In August of 2000, ZAM’s Hope was incorporated as a 501 (c) 3 not for profit. Since then, ZAM’s Hope has expanded to serve men, women, and children from 7 different ethnic backgrounds. Eighty percent of immigrant individuals who receive services are Indian, Pakistani, Mexican, Nepalese, Former Yugoslavian, Somalian and Afghani families. Most reside in the neighborhoods of West Rogers Park and West Ridge. Participants come to ZAM’s Hope with numerous problems. Among the most common are poverty, domestic violence, homelessness, stress created by two competing cultures and their expectations, unemployment, difficulty negotiating mainstream systems, and immigration issues.
ZAM’s Hope offers culturally appropriate services and is managed by a president, executive director, and board of directors. The number of individuals seeking help from ZAM’s Hope continues to grow at a rapid pace. Issues of confidentiality and trust are critical to ZAM’s Hope participants; they are unlikely to seek out mainstream services because of language barriers and fear of discrimination.
Ms. Zehra Quadri, Founder
“To Laugh often and much, to win the respect of intelligent people and affection of children, to earn the appreciation of honest critics, and endure the betrayal of false friends, to appreciate beauty, to find the best in others, to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition, to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived, this is to have succeeded.”
I would like to thank each and every one of you for the support you have provided to ZAM’s Hope Community Resource Center for the past eleven years. Together, we have accomplished so much for our community. Because of your generosity, we are able to help low-income individuals from over seven different cultural backgrounds navigate life in the Chicagoland area. Due to your willingness to volunteer your time and energy, our organization is expanding in its reach and scope.
The need for our services is stronger than ever. In these tough economic times, families are struggling to feed their children, keep a roof over their heads, and maintain a decent quality of life. Senior citizens and persons with disabilities are facing increased financial hardship.
Together, we must wholeheartedly push forward in our mission to serve the vulnerable, the lonely, the sick, and those without a voice.
Thank you for your dedication to improving the health of our community. Without your support and encouragement, ZAM’s Hope’s continued success would not be possible.
I look forward to many more years of serving the community together.
Executive Director/Founder, ZAM's Hope
Board of Directors
- Sardar Khanam, President
- Bindu Kadakia, Secretary
- Shaheen Ameer, Treasurer
- Shanaz Patel, Director
- Javed Aslam, Director
Advisory Board (alphabetical order)
- Almas Weldingwala
- Iftekhar Shareef