What is Hafla for Humanity?

Hafla for Humanity is a global project of bellydancers fundraising for organizations that are working to provide aid to people — particularly women and children — in Arab and Middle Eastern countries.

This is our way of recognizing that our beloved art form is a gift from the MENAHT (Middle East, North Africa, Hellenistic &Turkey) countries. We are grateful for the art, music, dance, and culture that these countries have shared with us and we want to give back.

It’s also an opportunity to band together with our fellow dancers around the globe and share our art in a spirit of fellowship and gratitude. Together, we are powerful.

  • In 2015, H4H organizers in more than 30 cities around the world raised over $22,000 for the International Rescue Committee‘s work with Syrian refugees.
  • In 2016, we raised more than $8700 for the Amar Foundation‘s work with Yazidi women and girls escaping ISIS.

Local events in 2020 will take place before May 31 and will help provide humanitarian aid to the people of Yemen via the International Rescue Committee.

Global Hafla for Humanity is a BellydanceU project, founded by Lauren Zehara Haas.

Get Involved


any time before March 1, 2020. Your event can take place any time before May 31 of 2020. 

A Hafla for Humanity event doesn’t need to be a big, city-wide hafla. It can be 5 troupemates gathering in your living room to watch dance videos and pass a collection basket. It could be a class, a workshop, a potluck party at the studio or a teacher’s home… we welcome all events, large or small.

And we’re here to support your event any way we can — check out our resources for event organizers regularly to see what we’ve added. 

Looking for local H4H events to attend?  Sign up for our e-mail list and  stay tuned on Facebook for more details.

Donate an item

We’ll be having a silent auction in the United States this year, too. To keep the auction manageable, we’ll restrict the listings to large-ticket items of interest to the entire United States: gently used costumes, festival packages, video classes, or bundles of smaller items would be perfect.

Message lauren@haflaforhumanity.com to discuss your donation.

This Year’s Charity

This year, Hafla for Humanity will be supporting the International Rescue Committee’s aid to Yemen

Yemen is facing the largest humanitarian crisis of our time. Two-thirds of the population in Yemen is at risk for starvation. The Yemeni people are under siege by war, famine, cholera, and displacement.

The International Rescue Committee (IRC) has been working in Yemen since 2012, and it is one of the few organizations that’s able to get aid into the war-torn country. The IRC is providing clean water, medicine, nutrition services and other urgent aid to as many Yemeni people as they can reach.

The organization spends a whopping 87% of its revenues on programming and is ranked in the top 1% of efficient and trustworthy charities by Charity Navigator. 

2020 Haflas

Watch this space for an event near you — or a Hafla for Humanity in your community!


Kingston, Ontario

February 22, 2020
Location: 206 Consession St. Kingston, ON
Kingston Egyptian Raqs will be hosting a casual Hafla with music, snacks, photo and sewing areas and costume swap tables. Stop by to say hello or stay for the whole time, a casual gathering for a good cause. Check out the event on facebook or email Haleemaraks@gmail.com if you’d like to participate!

Montreal, Quebec

March 22, 2020
Location: TBA
Join Aziza and Florence Leclerc for a community hafla featuring live music, shisha, and shenanigans in support of Global Hafla for Humanity. E-mail info@florencedanse.com for more info.


Tallinn, Estonia

February 22, 2020
Location: Mystika Dance Studio
Berit Vill and Mystika Dance Studio will be sponsoring our first-ever Hafla for Humanity in Estonia! Mark your calendar, details to follow. E-mail Mystika if you’d like to participate!

United States


Auburn, AL

May 30, 2020
Location: TBA
Firefly Nights Belly Dance is proud to partner with Global Hafla for Humanity for our semi-annual hafla! This event will include performances from a wide range of dancers, from student through professional, as we help raise funds for the International Rescue Committee’s efforts in Yemen. While the event is free to attend, all tips/donations will be provided to IRC.


Orange County, CA

May 31, 2020
Venue: TBA
Chani Rhinehart will host a performance, have a silent auction, and costume sale with a percentage of those sales being donated along with 100% of ticket sales after expenses. Email Chani if you’d like to be part of this local event.

Sacramento, CA

Date TBA
Details of this event to follow


Carbondale, IL

Date TBA
Nile Breeze Dance Collective will be sponsoring an event, with details to be announced. This is likely to be an informal style event featuring music, dance, and refreshments. Contact Tedi Thomas for details if you’d like to participate, or keep an eye on the Facebook event at this link.

Chicago, IL

February 14, 2020
Raks Geek
What’s better than nerd love? Geek out with us for Valentine’s Day! (Single? The Wookiee is happy to be your valentine this year!)
Hang with the bellydancing Wookiee, firespinning superheroes, and sword-wielding villains for a brand-new production of fire, nerdery, and wonder every other month – we’ll pay tribute to everything from the X-Men to Star Wars, Doctor Who to Silent Hill, Super Mario Bros to Sandman. It’s a veritable cornucopia of nerdy delights. (But not the kind you have to fight to the death for.)
So grab a Romulan Ale, help raise money for local non-profit orgs, and geek out – don’t miss one of the most unique experiences in the Alpha Quadrant!
February: We’re coordinating with the Global Hafla for Humanity to donate 10% of proceeds from the show to the International Rescue Mission. E-mail Raks Geek for more information.


Murray, Kentucky

Axis Tribal Bellydance will host an event with a portion of proceeds benefitting Hafla for Humanity, not only to fundraise but to bring the joy of dance to the community. E-mail for more information or to join the event.

New York

Buffalo, NY

February 22, 2020
Location: House of Hips
Hayatidance and House of Hips will host Vintage Vibe Drum Solo workshop with Maia Alexandra (Feb 8th) and So you Want to be a Showgirl performance intensive with Jo Boring from the Lunachix (Feb 22) in preparation for the Love will Find A Way – Global Hafla for Humanity performance event. All levels are welcome to the intensives, no prior dance experience required. All proceeds from the show will benefit the IRC. Please contact hayatidance@yahoo.com if you are interested in performing, attending or helping these efforts in any way. See link for additional details


Salt Lake City, UT

February 29, 2020
Come enjoy wonderful performances at Om Wellness as we fundraise for both the International Rescue Aid for Yemen and a local Utah non-profit. Doors open 8pm. Show starts 8:30pm promptly. Open dancing at end of show.
Suggested donation of $5 at the door. Vending, raffles and light fare will be for sale as part of the fundraiser. All proceeds after expenses will go toward both charities. If you’d like to participate, contact Aaliyah Jenny, 845-590-5645 or  aaliyahdance18@gmail.com