Companies can grow their businesses and customer base by developing goods and services that meet the needs of refugees.
A Syrian family visit a local shop to buy groceries with a cash assistance programme card. Photography credit: © UNHCR/Yorgos Kyvernitis
Refugees are often a marginalized and underserved community
While some basic services, such as electricity and water, are provided through aid agencies in camp settings or public utilities in urban and other non-camp settings, there are promising entry points where companies have comparative advantages and are prepared to tailor their goods and services to meet the distinct needs of refugee communities . These opportunities include financial products and services, telecommunication services, and certain types of educational, training, and job-placement services.
LinkedIn is growing Welcome Talent, which focuses on career development and job accessibility for refugees, to additional countries beyond Sweden. To date, LinkedIn has expanded Welcome Talent to Canada and the U.S. after reaching 3,000 refugees in Sweden in 2016.
Mastercard is expanding its services to reach displaced populations, and help refugees to integrate into their communities through access to identity, digital infrastructure, and enhanced data.
Pearson is helping Syrian refugees & children living in host communities improve academics & build resilience. Working with refugee children, Pearson developed an engaging math learning app. The pilot will reach nearly 4,000 people, primarily students grades 4-6, over the next two years.
© UNHCR/Georgina Goodwin