I was just nine years old when my family and I fled our home in Tehran during the Iranian Revolution. It was probably the hardest decision my parents ever had to make, leaving everything behind to start over in a new country.
Over the last few weeks, many families were confronted with a similar decision. As a result, more than 100,000 people were evacuated from Afghanistan—and they need our help.
To start, we are increasing our previous donations in support of Afghan refugee resettlement programs to $1 million. We will continue to work with key organizations such as the International Rescue Committee, Lutheran Immigrant and Refugee Services, FWD.US, No One Left Behind, Women for Afghan Women, and Team Rubicon to distribute these funds to frontline organizations supporting Afghan families and those seeking refuge.
This morning, we also launched an in-app donation button to drive additional funds to the resettlement programs of the International Rescue Committee. Anyone who wants to support Afghan refugees can now do so via the donate button in their Uber app. Together, all of these funds will be used to provide free rides, food deliveries, and freight, as well as essential services for Afghans, including medical care, case management, and resettlement support. Uber plans to match all in-app donations, up to an additional $1 million.
Lastly, an important piece of resettling in a new country is finding a path to the workforce. Because of its flexibility, work on platforms like Uber has historically been a valuable option for immigrants—something confirmed by recent research. Still, barriers like language can make it tough to get started. We want to make it even easier for Afghan refugees to access economic opportunities, if and when they are ready to do so. To that end, we’re updating the Uber Driver app as well as our key support pages in Pashto and Dari. We’re also launching a dedicated phone support line in those languages as well.
We believe that empowering movement, whether physically, economically, or socially, changes the world for the better. Helping Afghans build a new life is part of this mission, and we will continue to support immigrants around the world who deserve the right to create a better future.