FACT SHEET: Private Sector Leaders Are Stepping Up to Welcome Afghans
Through Operation Allies Welcome, the Biden Administration is marshaling a whole-of-America approach to safely, securely and effectively welcoming our Afghan allies and Afghans at-risk. In concert with Welcome.US, private sector leaders are playing a crucial role in this effort, stepping up in meaningful ways to welcome individuals who supported the United States over the past 20 years in Afghanistan and equip them for success as they rebuild their lives. Companies can get involved and learn more at Welcome.US.
Billion Mile Challenge
In an historic cross-divide alliance across the transportation industry, United, American, Delta, JetBlue, Alaska, Boeing, Tripadvisor Foundation, Frontier, and Air Canada have come together to help ensure that every Afghan evacuee receives a donated ticket to their new home—and that limited government resources are allocated to needs that only the public sector can fund. This morning, Welcome.US and Miles 4 Migrants announced, in that spirit, that more than an unprecedented 40,000+ flights had been donated across these companies and their customers—bringing the total to 600M+ donated frequent-flier miles and setting the stage for a Billion Mile Challenge to the American people now underway.
Accenture has committed more than $2.5M in cash and pro-bono services to support the resettlement of Afghan refugees. Working in partnership with Welcome.US, the IRC and other prominent organizations, Accenture is assisting refugees with housing, critical goods and services as well as employment opportunities.
Temporary housing is one of the most urgent needs facing Afghan newcomers. Airbnb.org has committed to providing temporary housing for 20,000 Afghan refugees and is working with the nine resettlement agencies and other Afghan-led groups to place newcomers into welcoming homes. As more Afghan refugees move off military bases and into communities, Airbnb.org is working to recruit more Airbnb hosts in cities across the country to build the supply of temporary housing.
After being among the airlines to take care of evacuees from Afghanistan through its duties with the Civil Reserve Air Fleet program, American Airlines is donating 6,000 flights through Welcome.US as another demonstration of its purpose to help ease the transition for Afghan evacuees and provide a welcoming experience to those who are beginning their journeys in the United States.
Bain Capital and its partners have committed more than $1 million to causes supporting the resettlement of Afghans.
Chamber of Commerce
Over the last three weeks, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, through its Hiring Our Heroes program, has conducted more than 30 employment sessions on seven military installations. Those sessions have served more than 2,300 Afghan guests providing critical guidance on the American workforce, employment opportunities and job search techniques.
Under the leadership of Chobani CEO and Tent Founder Hamdi Ulukaya, the Tent Coalition for Afghan Refugees has recruited 50 major companies that are exploring concrete opportunities to hire, train or help integrate Afghans into their communities in other important ways. This includes companies like Amazon, CVS Health, Pfizer, FedEx, and Tyson Foods and Tent is working with these companies to implement their hiring commitments across the country.
CVS Health Foundation is making a financial contribution to help fund Welcome.us, as well as donating products to meet critical needs for our Afghan Allies on military bases and participating in the effort to hire Afghan newcomers.
Etsy is using the power of entrepreneurship to welcome Afghan artisans onto the Etsy platform as a part of its Uplift Initiative. This pilot program will offer a broad range of business support services to empower Afghan artisans to earn income and define their financial future in the U.S.
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP
Since August 2021, more than 100 Gibson Dunn attorneys have dedicated over 2,000 pro bono hours, valued at approximately $2 million, in response to the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan. In partnership with Human Rights First, the Afghan-American Foundation and Welcome.US, the firm is forming and launching the Welcome Legal Alliance to mobilize law firms, corporate legal teams, and the broader legal community to ensure that our Afghan neighbors have access to legal services throughout the entire resettlement process. A growing list of other organizations and law firms, including The International Refugee Assistance Project, Kids in Need of Defense, Pars Equality Center, Tahirih Justice Center, and We the Action have committed to joining the Alliance. This initiative will amplify the work of – and drive resources to – the front-line non-profit organizations, pro bono lawyers, and others already providing a range of legal services to our Afghan allies.
As part of its commitment to giving everyone the opportunity to thrive, local Goodwill nonprofit organizations are collecting and donating clothing and toys for Afghans. Goodwill Industries International (GII) is collaborating with Welcome.US to design and deploy training and employment services that quickly connect Afghan families with paychecks, training and wrap-around supports.
Google is supporting the national effort to welcome and assist Afghan families as they build new lives in communities across America. To help Americans access information on ways to support their new Afghan neighbors, Google.org is donating an additional $1 million in ad grants to Welcome.US, bringing Google.org's total commitment toward welcoming Afghan arrivals to $5 million.
JP Morgan Chase
JPMorgan Chase has announced a $1 million commitment in funding to the International Rescue Committee, which will regrant funding through Blue Star Families, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America and the UK-based Combat Stress to assist with resettlement of Afghans and provide mental health care and other services for those in military and veterans communities who have been impacted by the conflict. In addition, the firm's legal team will provide pro bono assistance to address Afghan relocation and immigration issues.
ManpowerGroup is providing a Jobs Exchange portal that will integrate with the Welcome.US website, enabling employers to easily post relevant job openings, and allowing resettlement agencies and Afghans to search, apply and/or be matched to these roles based on their skill sets.
Procter & Gamble
P&G has donated more than $250,000 worth of products and cash donations to support the Afghan resettlement efforts. P&G's contributions include health & hygiene, personal care and cleaning products to several of the bases for distribution to the Afghan families and financial support to relief partners involved in the effort.
As part of Starbucks' commitment to creating a "Third Place" where everyone is welcome and support the national effort to welcome Afghan refugees, Starbucks has committed $450,000 to date in new grants from The Starbucks Foundation to nonprofit organizations supporting the resettlement of Afghans in the United States. Starbucks continues to build towards a goal of hiring 10,000 refugees globally.
Since 2015, Tripadvisor and the Tripadvisor Foundation have been committed to addressing the displacement crisis globally by supporting efforts to help refugees find a safe home. That commitment has included direct financial contributions of nearly $10 million dollars, the creation of strong partnerships with leading support organizations and engaging Tripadvisor employees and the wider travel community to support those that have been displaced. To support Afghan resettlement efforts, Tripadvisor has made donations to World Central Kitchen, Miles4Migrants and the International Institute of New England to support emergency relief efforts. In addition, Tripadvisor supports the just-announced Billion Miles Challenge launched in partnership with Miles4Migrants and Welcome.US to support the critical transportation needs of Afghans in search of safer communities.
After transporting Afghan allies and at-risk Afghans through the Civil Reserve Air Fleet program, United Airlines is contributing the mile equivalent of 7,000 flights to Miles4Migrants, building on an effort announced in August through its Miles on a Mission platform to collect donations for three nonprofit organizations and match donations up to 15 million miles. Miles4Migrants received 14.2 million of the 15 million match and an additional 32.1 million miles from United MileagePlus members. Together, United and its MileagePlus members have funded nearly 10,000 total flights. United is also encouraging MileagePlus members to donate by providing a free flight to Miles4Migrants for every 15,000 miles donated.
Walgreens partnered with United Airlines to ensure passengers arriving on Civil Reserve Air Fleet flights were treated with care and respect by providing personal hygiene supplies, infant supplies and OCT medication for United's CRAF flights to the U.S.
Walmart and the Walmart Foundation have committed $1.5 million dollars to support No One Left Behind, Lutheran Immigration Refugee Services, The Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors and Welcome.US. Walmart is also working closely with nonprofits to stand up registries on its Registry for Good to enable customers to support needs for Afghan refugees in their communities and the company is actively working to hire our Afghan newcomers.
Joseph R. Biden, FACT SHEET: Private Sector Leaders Are Stepping Up to Welcome Afghans Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/353201