Airbnb Inc. announced on Monday that it would offer free short-term housing for up to 100,000 fleeing Ukrainian refugees.
This initiative is a part of the business’s efforts to support evacuees through the company’s nonprofit unit.
The American vacation rental firm will fund these stays from the Airbnb.org Refugee Fund donations.
At present, over 500,000 Ukrainians have fled since the geopolitical tensions significantly escalated.
Still, Kyiv hopes for a diplomatic resolution with Russia despite the continued massing of Moscow troops and weapons to its border.
Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky said that the greatest need now is for more people to offer their homes in nearby countries.
Subsequently, Chesky sent letters to Poland, Romania, Germany, and Hungary offering help to house the refugees.
Airbnb.org ensured that it would work closely with governments to address the needs of people affected by the crisis.
Last September, the firm announced that it planned to provide free, short-term housing to 40,000 Afghan refugees.
Remarkably, it doubled the initial goal of 20,000 announced in August. Airbnb reported that it already provided housing to 21,300 Afghan refugees last week.
In the past five years, the firm sheltered 54,000 refugees and those who received asylum from many countries.
Accordingly, it helped citizens from war-torn Syria, Venezuela, and Afghanistan.
In 2020, it opened doors to tens of thousands of frontline workers fighting the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
Last year, the unit also activated its emergency response program to help those affected by the floods across Western Europe.
Meanwhile, Airbnb has not specified how much the company would spend on the latest commitment. It did not mention how long the refugees would stay in the free housing.
The company said it would provide more information about supporting this initiative in the coming days.
Airbnb, Etsy, Verizon Offer Support to Ukraine
Airbnb.org has nearly a decade of experience giving emergency accommodations to those in need.
Aside from the rental firm, other companies have also offered support to businesses and consumers in Ukraine.
For instance, online crafts retailer Etsy Inc. waived balances of about $4.00 million owed by sellers in the country.
At the same time, Verizon Communications Inc. mentioned that it would waive calling charges to Ukraine for some customers.
Similarly, Britain’s Virgin Media O2 has removed charges for data use in the conflicted state.
Furthermore, Ukraine’s government has received more than $10.00 million in cryptocurrency donations.