Tuesday, Airbnb and Airbnb.org—the latter of which is an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit—said it will be providing temporary housing to an estimated 20,000 Afghan refugees around the world. The cost of this project is covered by contributions made to the nonprofit by Airbnb, the rental app company’s CEO and co-founder Brian Chesky, and donors to the Airbnb.org Refugee Fund.
“As tens of thousands of Afghan refugees resettle around the world, where they stay will be the first chapter in their new lives,” Chesky said. “For these 20,000 refugees, my hope is that the Airbnb community will provide them with not only a safe place to rest and start over, but also a warm welcome home.”
Earlier this month, Airbnb’s nonprofit sent emergency funds and additional support to the International Rescue Committee (IRC), HIAS, and Church World Service to help set up immediate temporary residences for as many as 1,000 refugees. The company said that—through their work with a variety of partners—165 refugees were able to secure access to safe housing over this past weekend shortly after arriving in the U.S.
“As the IRC helps to welcome and resettle Afghans in the U.S., accessible housing is urgently needed and essential,” David Miliband, President and CEO of IRC, said. “We are grateful to our partners at Airbnb.org and Airbnb for once again offering their support and infrastructure to meet this moment, providing safe and welcoming places for individuals and families as they arrive in the United States and begin rebuilding their lives.”
The latest move from Airbnb follows the company’s June launch of the $25 million Refugee Fund, an initiative that—like the temporary housing for Afghan refugees—aims to boost support for refugees around the world.
Over the weekend, the U.S. Air Mobility Command reported that an Afghan woman had given birth to a baby girl while aboard an evacuation plane. Per the report, both the mother and the newborn baby were confirmed to be in good condition.
In a recent statement, President Biden said he had placed Ambassador Tracey Jacobson in charge of an effort to relocate Afghan Special Immigrant Visa applicants and other allies. Biden also authorized the deployment of an estimated 5,000 troops.
“Our hearts go out to the brave Afghan men and women who are now at risk,” Biden said. “We are working to evacuate thousands of those who helped our cause and their families.”