Airbnb, through its non-profit offshoot, Airbnb.org, has committed to providing temporary housing to 20,000 Afghan refugees across the globe.
In announcing the initiative on Twitter, Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky described the current displacement and resettlement of Afghan refugees in the US and elsewhere as “one of the biggest humanitarian crises of our time”.
“We feel a responsibility to step up,” he said.
“I hope this inspires other business leaders to do the same. There’s no time to waste.”
The cost of the initiative will be funded through contributions to Airbnb.org from Airbnb and Chesky, as well as donors to the Airbnb.org Refugee Fund, which was created earlier this year.
“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.”
Today’s announcement builds on efforts that have already begun in support of Afghan refugees at Airbnb and Airbnb.org.
Last week, Airbnb.org gave emergency funding and support to the International Rescue Committee, HIAS and Church World Service to provide immediate temporary stays via the Airbnb platform for up to 1,000 arriving Afghan refugees.
Over the past weekend, Airbnb.org worked with partners to place 165 refugees in safe housing shortly after touching down in the US.