Uber partners with the Tent Partnership for Refugees to provide opportunities for refugees across Africa
7am CET, 17 December 2019
During the first Global Refugee Forum in Geneva, Uber announced its commitment to empower 1000 refugees to become driver-partners on its platform in Africa by December 2022. Starting with a pilot of 50 refugees in Uganda and then scaling this initiative in Uganda and other countries in the region, Uber aims to provide further access to disadvantaged and underserved communities by connecting individuals to flexible earning opportunities.
To help refugees become economically productive and gain access to finance to lease a car, Uber, in partnership with the Tent Partnership for Refugees (Tent), will provide a grant whose funds will serve as a first loss guarantee against potential defaults on the refugees’ car loans. With this assurance, PostBank, a bank in Uganda, will offer car loans to refugees at a competitive rate as well as offer financial literacy support, appreciating that for most refugees, this is the first time they are taking on such a financial obligation.
Speaking at the private sector dinner at the Global Refugee Forum, Mimi Omokri, Head of Business Development, Uber Sub-Saharan Africa explains, “This programme holds the potential to change the lives of many refugees living in Uganda and across Africa which are often seen as sub-prime lenders and too risky to qualify for traditional credit. Through this programme, we believe they will be able to meaningfully improve their livelihoods and enable them to get into the driver’s seat when it comes to their own future.”
Uber will also partner with the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) and Kampala based NGO, Young African Refugees for Integral Development (YARID) to identify refugee drivers to participate in the programme, support the onboarding, upskilling and performance.
“Refugees often face increased barriers to finance and to employment when they are starting new lives in their host communities. This is why this innovative partnership between Tent, Uber and other NGOs has the potential to meaningfully improve refugees’ lives across Africa,” says Gideon Maltz, Executive Director at Tent. “We are proud of Uber’s leadership in this space.”
Uber’s mission is to help people get a ride at the push of a button – everywhere and for everyone. We started in 2009 to solve a simple problem – how do you get a ride at the touch of a button? With over 10 billion trips later, we’ve started tackling an even greater challenge: reducing congestion and pollution in our cities by getting more people into fewer cars.
Uber is available in sixteen cities in Sub-Saharan Africa (Cape Town, Durban, Joburg, Pretoria, Port Elizabeth, East London, Nairobi, Mombasa, Lagos, Abuja, Benin City, Kampala, Abidjan, Accra, Kumasi and Dar es Salaam). Overall, the Uber network is available in over 600 cities in over 65 countries. To request a ride, users must download the free application for Android, iPhone, Blackberry 7, or register for Uber at www.uber.com/go. For questions visit www.uber.com
About the Tent Partnership for Refugees
The Tent Partnership for Refugees, founded by Chobani’s Hamdi Ulukaya, mobilizes the business community to improve the lives and livelihoods of nearly 26 million refugees forcibly displaced from their home countries. Tent believes that the business community is uniquely positioned to address the global refugee crisis by mobilizing the networks, resources, innovation, and the entrepreneurial spirit of the business community – and that companies have the greatest impact they leverage their core business operations to hire refugees, integrate them into supply chains, invest in refugees, and deliver services to them. Tent has over 100 large members. Learn more about Tent: www.tent.org.
For more information:
Senior Communications Associate