Barack Obama promoted the effort on Twitter, and those who could not offer their help decided to support the cause with donations instead.
Now, about 30,000 hosts have signed up on Airbnb.org, the company’s philanthropic site, to provide free housing, according to an Airbnb spokesperson. That figure is already more than the 20,000 Afghan refugees that Airbnb hosts extended free or discounted housing to last summer. Airbnb.org’s goal of providing housing to 100,000 Ukrainian refugees would equal the total number of people Airbnb.org helped through crises between 2017 and 2021 combined.
The company’s nonprofit arm has been slowly building the infrastructure to support more people escaping natural disasters, war and other crises over the past decade. Airbnb’s work started in 2012, when Hurricane Sandy struck and a host wanted to offer free temporary housing. Shortly thereafter, Airbnb launched a tool that allowed hosts to offer their homes to people displaced by natural disasters. After that, Airbnb began extending free or discounted housing to people fleeing conflicts like the Syrian refugee crisis and disasters including hurricanes and earthquakes. By 2020, Airbnb.org broke off into the company’s own philanthropic arm focused on these efforts…(More)”.