Home rental company Airbnb is offering free short-term housing for up to 1,00,000 Ukrainian refugees fleeing the country due to the Russian invasion.
In his tweet, Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky said, “Airbnb and Airbnb.org are working with our Hosts to house up to 100,000 refugees fleeing from Ukraine, for free.”
The company will also work with neighbouring European states to provide long-term stays.
Brian Chesky added, “We need help to meet this goal. The greatest need we have is for more people who can offer their homes in nearby countries, including Poland, Germany, Hungary and Romania. If you can host a refugee, go here: http://airbnb.org/get-involved.”
Airbnb CEO also wrote to the governments of Poland, Romania, Germany and Hungary, offering support for housing refugees, according to a company statement. Airbnb.org, a non-profit established by the home rental company, will work with resettlement agencies and NGOs to place Ukrainian refugees across the world. The stays will be funded by Airbnb, donors to Airbnb.org’s Refugee Fund and Airbnb hosts offering discounted or free accommodation.
Chesky also urged people to donate to Airbnb for the programme. “While we work to finalise these details, refugees and asylum seekers who are in need of immediate support can get help from: http://help.unhcr.org/ukraine,” he said.
Ukraine has more than 17,000 short-term rentals, says market research firm AirDNA.
Due to Russia invasion, more than 3,00,000 Ukrainians have left the country. The European Commission, United Nations and other agencies watching the crisis anticipate that the number could grow to millions.
Last year, Airbnb had helped to resettle refugees following the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan, providing stay to more than 21,000 people. The house-sharing company is operation in more than 220 countries and regions.