New York, N.Y., September 24, 2018 – Today, the Tent Partnership for Refugees will welcome new businesses to its coalition of global companies committed to leveraging their core business and social responsibility initiatives to provide support to refugees around the world. The companies, including Sodexo, Hilton, Uniqlo, Barilla, Ipsos, and Careem, will announce new efforts to support refugees during an event hosted by Jim Yong Kim, President of the World Bank Group, and Hamdi Ulukaya, CEO of Chobani and Founder of the Tent Partnership for Refugees. The announcements highlight the continued resolve of the private sector to support refugees and host communities globally.
“There are more than 25 million refugees in the world, the majority of whom are now living in low-or middle-income countries,” World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim said. “These host countries face enormous challenges to meet the pressing needs of refugees while continuing to provide for their own people. I applaud the businesses who have made concrete commitments today to support refugees and their host communities. My hope is that more businesses will be inspired to act and provide the critical support that’s needed to create opportunities for everyone.”
“The global refugee crisis is not something that NGOs and governments can solve on their own. Now more than ever, we need businesses to step up and act. It’s not a choice, but a responsibility,” said Hamdi Ulukaya, Founder of the Tent Partnership for Refugees. “I’m grateful that Tent is now 100 companies strong—it’s a clear sign that momentum is growing. But I hope today inspires many more companies to do their part and help give the millions of men, women, and children who’ve lost everything the future they deserve.”
At the event, companies will announce new commitments to support refugees around the world:
- Ipsos will hire 100 refugees by 2020.
- Sodexo will hire 300 refugees in the U.S., Canada, Brazil and Sweden by 2020.
- Hilton will build on existing efforts to impact 16,000 refugees by 2030 by providing hospitality skills training, in-kind donations and volunteer hours to refugee organizations, and offering employment opportunities.
- Ben & Jerry’s will engage their fans in campaigning for progressive policy change for refugees and asylum seekers, and at least 500 refugees will complete their business incubator program and be hired for part-time employment in Europe by 2023.
- Careem will hire 100 refugees and upskill 100 refugees through skills-based workshops and mentoring by 2023.
- Barilla will provide internship and job opportunities to 75 refugees in Europe by 2023, adding to the nearly 60 employment opportunities the company has already provided.
- Uniqlo will hire refugees in the U.S., Canada, France, Germany and Japan.
- Microsoft will scale its assistance to refugees globally beyond the Syrian crisis, and will support digital skills and training for 1 million refugees as well as provide educational opportunities, including developing an open source online education platform to deliver formal education and digital literacy skills.
- Care.com will train more than 800 refugee women in Germany by 2020 for employment in the care industry.
- Hissho Sushi will help 1,250 refugees become franchise owners by 2023 as it expands its locations across the United States and hire 30 refugees at its headquarters to support this expansion.
- Amplio Recruiting will place 10,000 resettled refugees in the U.S. in full-time employment by 2023 (dependent upon a pool of working age refugees in the U.S. seeking employment).
The event will also feature a discussion on the critical role of the private sector in helping refugees and host communities in Jordan, with leaders from the following companies and organizations announcing commitments focused on Jordan:
- Grofin will deploy $5 million to small and medium-sized enterprises in Jordan that are either owned by refugees or employ refugees, with funding support from Shell Foundation and Soros Economic Development Fund.
- Paramount Fine Foods will source $1 million worth of products from suppliers in Jordan that hire or are committed to hiring at least 25 percent refugees.
- KOIS Invest will raise at least $10 million in capital to invest in a three-year development impact bond (DIB) that is structured to support job training and entrepreneurship for Syrian refugees and local vulnerable populations in Jordan and Lebanon.
- VPS Healthcare will develop and deliver training programs for qualified doctors, nurses and health workers, including refugees and Jordanians, in partnership with the Royal Health Awareness Society (RHAS) and the American College of Physicians.
- Jerash Garments will hire an additional 100 refugees at its factory in Jordan within a year.
- Safe Ports will hire 100 refugees at its new logistics hub in northern Jordan.
- 17 Jordan will establish an investment platform that will highlight Jordan-focused investment deals, including several deals focused on refugees.
- Groenendijk Bedrijfskleding will source $1 million worth of garments from suppliers in Jordan that hire or are committed to hiring at least 25 percent refugees.
- Massachusetts Institute of Technology will expand its training programs in tech skills for refugees and Jordanians.
“The companies that stepped forward today understand that refugees are more than just victims – they’re productive workers and entrepreneurs, who can contribute when given the opportunity,” said Gideon Maltz, Executive Director of the Tent Partnership for Refugees. “We’re excited to welcome these companies into our growing network.”
For the World Bank Group, these efforts are part of a broader strategy to engage corporate actors and foundations in critical areas of development, such as the forced displacement crisis while promoting entrepreneurship and innovation. In addition to business-to-business matchmaking, the World Bank is also working with numerous partners to help create opportunities for greater investments, while using its policy and sector work to address employment and market development constraints.
These companies join Tent’s global coalition of more than 100 businesses supporting refugees, allowing them the opportunity to access relevant resources and events, and share the impact of their efforts across the Tent network. The full list of Tent members can be found here.
About the Tent Partnership for Refugees
The Tent Partnership for Refugees, founded by Chobani’s Hamdi Ulukaya, is mobilizing the private sector to improve the lives and livelihoods of more than 25 million refugees forcibly displaced from their home countries. Ulukaya launched Tent with the belief that the private sector is uniquely positioned to address the global refugee crisis by mobilizing the networks, resources, innovation, and the entrepreneurial spirit of the business community. There are over 100 companies in the Tent Partnership supporting refugees across 34 countries.
Tent believes that companies have the greatest impact when they treat refugees not as victims, but as economically-productive workers, suppliers, entrepreneurs, and customers – and when they leverage their core business operations to hire refugees, integrate them into supply chains, invest in refugees, and deliver services to them. Learn more about Tent: http://www.tent.org.
About the World Bank Group
The World Bank Group is one of the world’s largest sources of funding and knowledge for developing countries. It comprises five closely associated institutions: the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA), which together form the World Bank; the International Finance Corporation (IFC); the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA); and the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). Each institution plays a distinct role in the mission to fight poverty and improve living standards for people in the developing world. For more information, please visit www.worldbank.org, www.miga.org, and www.ifc.org.