Working for workplace religious diversity, equity & inclusion



Nominated by:


Khalid khowshnaw is the successor of his father who established his business in Erbil city in seventh century. After few years he was able to establish his own business. Mr. Khalid’s clear vision to improve his business was his power to expand the work to cover a wider market place to become much bigger and to engage more tools for that purpose. In the 1990s, he established Hemn Company for trading, and in the 2000s he, with his brothers, established their second company (Hemn company for General Contracts). When he noticed that the success of the business is not possible without a strong infrastructure, he established their third company (Hemn group for investment, General trading, General contracting and construction materials industries) to specialize in producing constructions materials.

The projects that are under construction with Kurdistan regional government include: Erbil Ring Road 120m: The project is construction of the widest freeway (known as 120m) for 33 Km. Erbil Ring Road 150m: The project is construction of the widest freeway (known as 150m) for 70 Km. Erbil-Duhok highway: The highway to connect Erbil city with Duhok, 38 km-long. Italian City 1: This truly integrated community includes 640 residential units and 80 commercial units in different neighborhoods, each with their own distinctive style built on an area of 384827 m2. Italian City 2: 1,560 residential units is designed to the highest quality standards built on an area of 743,073 m2. Erbil city center and the airport are both easily accessible via a ring road.  New Azadi City: Built on an area of 766,150 m2, the development features 1,395 residential units. Phase 1 of the Project featuring 612 residential units is already complete, with Phases 2 & 3 planned for the near future.

Information about the policy, programme or initiative

1. Please describe a policy(s), programme(s) or initiative(s) that the Nominee (or the company the Nominee leads/led) has launched or spearheaded to advance the company’s efforts to champion interfaith understanding and peace (max 300 words)

The Hemn Group is a national company working in construction and investment projects for many years, and combats any kind of discrimination on any base (race, religion, ethnicity or sectarian groups). In the Hemn Group, projects include different nationalities of employees  working together without being subjected to discrimination. The vision and mentality of group owners is to refuse to have the manpower of the company be formed on the bases of closed communities or recruit staff from a specific group of people. Where we implement projects, we respect the culture of that district and recruit our employees from that area in order to involve the local people with our projects to help them benefit from opportunities become available at our projects.

During the many years of the sectarian conflicts in Iraq after 2003, many families fled from the other parts of Iraq to the Kurdistan region seeking a safe zone. We at the Hemn Group offered many the opportunity of getting jobs, many of whom have been promoted to occupy high levels of the jobs and have continued working with us for long time and still there are still a large number thanks that their areas are saved and safe now compare to the past years. In the Hemn Group, you will find different religious believers are respected and facilitations are provided for them to practice their worships: Muslims, Christians, Yazidi are free to express their selves without been hatred or prevented. We share each others’ celebrations and feasts.  

2. Which category or categories does the policy(s), programme(s) or initiative(s) fall into:

  • – Core Business
  • – Partnership and collective action

3. Does the policy(s), programme(s) or initiative(s) address any of the following related to Freedom of Religion or Belief (FoRB):

  • – Non-discrimination and/or non-harassment on the basis of religion or belief
  • – Protecting and promoting freedom of religion or belief (FoRB) in the community

4. Please describe the objective of the policy(s), programme(s) or initiative(s) and the need, goal or gap that it was designed to address. (max 200 words)

Hiring Through Hemn Group of Iraqi Immigrants: offering all religious faiths a place at the table.

5. How was the policy(s), programme(s) or initiative(s) implemented?  What role did the Nominee play? (max 200 words)


6. What were/are the most persistent challenges in implementing the policy(s), programme(s) or initiative(s)?  How were they/are they being overcome and what was the role of the Nominee? (max 200 words)

War-torn country with sectarian conflicts.

7. What are the key lessons learned from launching the policy(s), programme(s) or initiative(s)? (max 200 words)

People can work together of different faiths.

Impact and Reporting on Progress

1. How do you monitor and evaluate progress on the policy(s), programme(s) or initiative(s)? If relevant, what indicators and metrics are used? (max 200 words)

Successful completion of development projects across cultural and religious divides.

2. What outcomes or impact have been reached to date? Please be as specific as possible and supply available data. (max 200 words)

Successful construction of infrastructure and housing to make a war torn area livable.

3. Is the Nominee’s company reporting on its practices, policies, programmes and/or initiatives to champion interfaith understanding and peace? If so, please provide relevant weblink(s) for posting on the Awards’ website. If integrated into the company’s corporate sustainability report, Global Compact COP or GRI Report, please indicate relevant pages and/or sections. (max 200 words)

This will be the first recognition for the efforts.

Additional Information:

A. How has the Nominee taken action to support and promote the UN Global Compact’s Ten Principles? If so, please specify. (max 200 words)

Working for peace.

B. Please provide any additional information to be considered.



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