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Middle Eastern Community

 

General Information

History

The Middle Eastern communities were among the very first waves of immigrants to arrive here in Southwestern Pennsylvania. They arrived in two waves to form a very diverse community that contributed greatly to the building and growth of this region. The early immigrants were mainly hard laborers who were seeking work in the mines and factories of Western PA. Most were Lebanese and Syrian, while some were Egyptian and Palestinian. They settled in areas such as Aliquippa, New Castle, New Kensington, Homestead, and Pittsburgh. The second wave of immigrants included other Middle Eastern nationalities. Some were professionals such as doctors, lawyers, engineers and professors. Others came as students to the internationally known universities of Pittsburgh. Many talented and able people received positions with the major corporations in the area. Among the nationalities of this wave were Iraqis, Moroccans, Iranians, Libyans and others.

Religious Organizations in Pittsburgh

Christian

  • Our Lady of Victory Maronite Catholic Church (http://www.olov.info/)
    1000 Lindsay Rd.
    Carnegie, PA 15106
    Phone: 412-278-0841
     
  • St. John the Baptist Maronite Church
    2 West Reynolds St.
    New Castle, PA 16101
    Phone: 412-658-0787
     
  • St. George Maronite Church
    1 Lebanon Terrace
    Uniontown, PA 15401
    Phone: 724- 437-5589

Jewish

Muslim

  • The Islamic Center of Pittsburgh (http://www.icp-pgh.org/
    The Islamic Center of Pittsburgh is the area's largest Mosque, providing services to Muslim and Non-Muslim communities in Western Pennsylvania, Eastern Ohio, and North West Virginia. Everyone is welcome at the Islamic Center of Pittsburgh. We hold regular prayer services five times a day. We also hold monthly dinners, lectures, and many classes that teach about Islam, Arabic, and understanding the Quran.  The Center was established in 1992, and is located in Oakland.
    4100 Bigelow Boulevard
    Pittsburgh, PA 15213
    Phone: (412) 682 5555

 

Cultural Organizations

Egyptian

Occasionally the Egyptian community organizes a picnic, a cook out, or a potluck dinner. You will probably hear about these events from the Egyptians you will most certainly meet in the first few days of your arrival. Don't feel shy introducing yourself to fellow Egyptians in Pittsburgh. You will realize at once that although we don't have a unified organization, we definitely still have some Egyptian heart in all of us. The sweet thing is when you are surrounded by Egyptian friends, you will feel home again. Finally 'Ahlan Wa Sahlan Biik' in Pittsburgh.
University of Pittsburgh Egyptian Club
Email: amest30@hotmail.com


Iranian

The Iranian community came to the Pittsburgh region both from other states and directly from Iran, mainly as students and professors, and includes such diverse professionals as attorneys, physicians, engineers, industrial and commercial executives, and academics. 
The main Iranian cultural organizations in Pittsburgh are located at universities such as the University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon University.

  • University of Pittsburgh: Persian Panthers (http://www.persianpanthers.org/)
    The Persian Panthers is a student organization in the University of Pittsburgh. Our objective at Persian Panthers is to:
    Promote the understanding of the social, traditional, and historical aspects of Iranian culture, and Provide a source of union and support for the Iranian community, and
    Help foster friendship among different cultural groups and the Pittsburgh community in general.

Our activities include:

  • Celebrating Iranian festivals, such as Norouz, Yalda, and Mehregan
  • Screening of Iranian and other nationality movies
  • Having joint events with other students organizations
  • Conducting cultural classes, e.g., learning Farsi language
  • Other regular entertainment/recreational activities
  • Any other related cultural activities
     
  • Carnegie Mellon University: Persian Student Organization (http://www.andrew.cmu.edu/user/pso/)
    Persian Student Organization (PSO) is an organization designed to bring students to understand and appreciate the rich Persian culture, history, and art through social and cultural events and recreational activities.

    Our mission is to participate in the enhancement of the university's diversity and existing multicultural framework. We also strives to provide a sense of community and a support network for Persian students or the students who are interested in the Persian culture in different colleges at Carnegie Mellon University.

Israeli

Israelis come from many different backgrounds, including Jewish, Christian, and Muslim populations. In the case of Pittsburgh, the Israeli community has become closely associated with the Jewish community that has long flourished here. Whether you're new to Pittsburgh or you've been here for years, the United Jewish Federation of Pittsburgh, through its Community Directory, will help you find whatever you're looking for -- everything Israeli or Jewish in Pittsburgh, from pre-schools to senior services. Use it to discover all that Pittsburgh's close-knit Jewish and Israeli communities have to offer. In particular, the Jewish Family & Children's Services organization offers aid to all Israelis, regardless of race or religion.

  • Community Directory: Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh(http://jewishfederationpittsburgh.org/section.aspx?id=5)
     
  • Jewish Community Center of Greater Pittsburgh (http://www.jccpgh.org)
    The Jewish Community Center offers a wide range of programs and activities that serve infants, children, teens, families, adults, and the elderly.
    5738 Forbes Ave.
    Pittsburgh, PA 15217
    (412) 521-8010

    South Hills Location:
    345 Kane Blvd.
    Pittsburgh, PA 15243
    (412) 278-1975
     

  • The Hillel Jewish University Center of Pittsburgh (http://www.hilleljuc.org/)
    The Edward and Rose Berman Hillel Jewish University Center (Hillel JUC) is the umbrella organization for all Jewish campus life in Pittsburgh. Serving approximately 4,000 Jewish University students in Oakland, the Hillel JUC acts as a "community of communities" in empowering and mentoring student leaders to enrich the lives of their fellow Jewish students so that they can in turn enrich the Jewish people & the world. The Hillel JUC is also the center of Israeli student life in Pittsburgh with an exciting Israel Cafe, Israel program center and regular social, educational and religious programming for the Israeli student and faculty population in Oakland.

Lebanese

The Lebanese community was among the first to arrive in Pittsburgh. They have served this area and this country in many ways, including serving with the armed forces in both World War I and II. There is no official organization or club that represents the Lebanese community, but when a new person needs help or information, the Lebanese are very friendly and helpful, and they will gladly provide any possible help.

Every year Our Lady of Victory Maronite Church hosts a Lebanese food festival.  For more information see: (http://www.pghlebanesefestival.com/index.php)

Palestinian

The Palestinian community in Southwestern Pennsylvania consists of a small group of Palestinians that have come to study or to find peace and refuge in this region. 

  • Pittsburgh Palestine Solidarity Committee (http://pittsburgh-psc.org/)
    The Pittsburgh Palestine Solidarity Committee was founded to foster information, dialogue and activities connected with the Palestinian People’s struggle for independence.
     
  • Students for Justice in Palestine at the University of Pittsburgh(http://www.pitt.edu/~sorc/pittsjp/index.html)
    Students for Justice in Palestine, is a diverse group of students, faculty, staff, and community members working towards common goals of creating a forum for Palestinian independence and basic human rights. We are organized on principles to promote justice, human rights, liberation, and self-determination for the Palestinian people.

 

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