Thank you to everyone who made our 4th Annual Musicians Against Torture benefit concert on Friday, August 11th a success! A special thank you to our performers Yerin Yang, Sara Su Jones, Tatyana Stepanova, Jessica Robbins, and Todd Kessler; Thomas Zoells and the PianoForte Foundation; our generous sponsors and in-kind donors (listed below); and of course, everyone who attended and participated in the evening. We’re grateful to you for sharing your evening with us and supporting Kovler Center! Your generosity makes a tremendous impact on the lives of torture survivors.

If you were unable to attend the event but would like to support Kovler Center, please consider making a donation.

Raffle/Auction Sponsors: Chicago Bulls, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Dovetail Brewery, Empirical Brewery, Escape Artistry, iO Chicago Improv Theatre, La Sirena Clandestina, Mary Rafferty Photography, Public House Theater, and Uncommon Ground

In-Kind Sponsors: Cedars Mediterranean Kitchen, Chipotle, Jewel Osco, Lagunitas Brewing, Trader Joe’s, and Wine Goddess



“The law is crystal clear: torture can never be used at any time or under any circumstances, including during conflict or when national security is under threat. On this International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, we express our solidarity with and support for the hundreds of thousands of victims of torture and their family members throughout the world.”

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, June 26, 2016

Twenty years ago, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed June 26 the International Day in Support of Victims of Torture.

Since 1987, Heartland Alliance Marjorie Kovler Center has been a leader in torture treatment, helping to transform the lives of survivors from more than 85 countries in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East. Each year, Kovler Center staff and a large network of volunteers provide medical, mental health, and social services to 350 individuals who have survived unimaginable horrors.

Every day, Kovler Center provides high quality integrated rehabilitative services to survivors of torture and helps individuals and families heal and rebuild their lives.

Thank you for joining us and standing in solidarity with survivors, families, torture treatment centers and human rights advocates around the world as we honor survivors, remember victims, and strive to end torture. Please lend your support with a tax-deductible donation to Kovler Center.


Read about Kovler Center’s Mario Gonzalez in the latest issue of Chicago Magazine.


Thanks to all who made 30 Years of Healing a smash success!

We were thrilled to honor Dr. M. Zaher Sahloul and host more than 250 friends of Kovler Center at the iconic Art Institute of Chicago as we celebrated 30 years of transforming the lives of torture survivors. The event raised over $120,000, more than quadruple the funds raised at our last benefit! The proceeds will provide comprehensive services to the 350 survivors of torture from 60 different countries who walk through our doors each year.

As Abdinasir Kahin shared, “It took me years, but through the kindness and generosity of Kovler Center’s dedicated professionals, I came to trust human beings again. Because of Kovler Center, I believe that people are good. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

You can be a part of our effort by continuing to support the Kovler Center. Engaging volunteers is a natural extension of our organizing principle that torture treatment is best supported in a community context. To learn more, click on the Get Involved tab or contact Flutra Sahatqija at

Photos to come!

30 Years of Healing

Hear real survivors’ stories told by Kovler Center’s team.


Marjorie Kovler Center helps transform the lives of individuals recovering from the complex consequences of politically-sanctioned torture. Kovler Center provides medical, mental health, and social services; trains and educates locally and globally; and advocates for the end of torture worldwide.