Iranians will tell you that they are very “dast o del baz” which means open handed and open hearted and it’s true! Hospitality, welcoming guests, who are said to be God’s friends, and kindness are among the beautiful expressions of Iranian culture.
Iran has been hosting a large population of maybe up to 4 million Afghan refugees and migrants for almost four decades. Operation Mercy today works among the refugees in the capital city, Tehran. The work of Operation Mercy has been welcomed in Iran since 2002 when we responded to an earthquake in Qazvin.
Home to over 80 million people, Iran is the second largest country in the Middle East. Known as Persia until 1935, Iran occupies the large plateau located between the Caspian Sea and the Persian Gulf, sharing borders with Iraq, Turkey, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Armenia, Afghanistan, and Pakistan.
Iran is a land with an intricate tapestry of both modern and ancient influence. Evidence of one of the world’s oldest continuous civilizations is found in Iran. Today, the capital, Tehran is a busy metropolis situated at the foot of the lofty Alborz mountain range.
Iran boasts a sophisticated culture, where poets and poetry are highly valued, with Persian epic poetry sung to traditional accompaniments. Life in Iran reflects a rich cultural heritage with traditional events that have been evident for centuries.
An Iranian proverb says, "Every man goes down to his death bearing in his hands only that which he has given away"... such is the heart of these hospitable people.