Philanthropy has evolved over the past century and driven some of the most profound social impact success stories. At UNHCR, we develop partnerships with aspirations of achieving audacious results and successes. Our Refugee Zakat Fund is an innovative initiative that hopes to bring a catalytic and systemic change in the way we approach and perceive ‘giving’ in general, as well as, the way we look at support for refugees – dignified support.
Of course, we cannot aspire alone. It takes collaboration, partnerships, and persistence.
When you think about it, 2.5% may not seem like a big sum for those who can afford it. For displaced persons, this 2.5% is a lifeline. It is the difference between living on the streets or being sheltered from the elements. It is the difference between having food on the table or none at all. It is the difference between having soap and access to clean running water, more important than ever now, in this COVID19-era or not.
This is the power of the 2.5% annual obligation.
Imagine the impact of this same amount magnified through partnerships with corporations, NGOs and foundations.
Instead of supporting an individual, support is extended to families with a domino effect that trickles down to an entire community. This translates to children going to school, rent and debts paid food on the table, and most importantly a shelter to call home – home away from home.
What does all of this mean on the ground? Let’s take Yemen as an example.
As the war in Yemen enters its 6th year, Yemen is now known as the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.
80 percent of the population, or 24 million people, live below the poverty line and depend on humanitarian aid for their survival. Yemen’s economy has contracted by almost 50 percent and is on the brink of collapse. Since 2015, 3.65 million people have been displaced in Yemen, in addition to the 280,000 Somali refugees already in the country. A growing number of families have resorted to harmful coping mechanisms such as begging, child labor, and early marriage.
Add to this, COVID19 prevention measures, which is not only a daunting task but an impossible one.
Torrential rains over the past weeks have continued to cause deadly flash floods and significant damage to properties and infrastructure in southern governorates.
You may think that against this horrific backdrop, there can only be a political solution to the crisis. While this indeed may be the case, never underestimate the power of humanitarian aid in providing basic and necessary needs for survival. You would be amazed at the services we are able to provide through incredible partnerships and with the generosity of individuals, foundations, NGOs, and corporations. The hope and joy that is reinstated on many displaced children’s faces despite everything they have ever endured and witnessed is what keeps us striving to serve despite all the ongoing challenges.
Through the support of donors and partners, UNHCR has helped displaced families pay rent, build their own shelters, ensured births are recorded so that children can register in schools, and have access to medical treatment. As a preventive measure against COVID19, UNHCR has distributed hygiene kits and continues to raise awareness about coronavirus transmission.
This is the power of partnerships and philanthropy coming together in harmony to maximize the reach and impact of donations and ensure its delivery in a manner, which protects the dignity of those most in need.
Unfortunately, Yemen is now facing further funding cuts, and with 80% of the population relying on aid, this is not only a recipe for disaster but a dangerous one.
Your donation of 210 USD will secure a dignified living for one Yemini family for an entire year.
Imagine what your 2.5% can do for more displaced Yemenis for an entire year.
Together, we can turn the tide of despair towards a brighter future, one day, and one family at a time.
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