How UNHCR will make a difference
In 2024, UNHCR will invest in self-reliance, economic inclusion and livelihoods interventions in 121 countries.
UNHCR aims to convene stakeholders who can support displaced people’s access to rights, services, land, employment and self-employment opportunities. It is backing the Global Refugee Forum “mega-pledge” to reach 1 million people with economic inclusion and broader social protection programming within four years, and to support 15 States in strengthening or adopting laws and policies on economic inclusion and social protection. UNHCR also wants to see forcibly displaced and stateless people included in national services and programmes. It seeks partnerships to invest in the areas hosting them, facilitate their access to decent work, and support economic recovery in areas of voluntary returns. With the Joint Data Center and others, UNHCR will gather and analyse data on sustainable socioeconomic inclusion in national development plans and programmes, such as the Shirika Plan, where Kenya is shifting its approach to refugee management by transforming refugee camps into integrated settlements.
UNHCR will collaborate with governments, development actors, including the ILO and the World Bank Group, the private sector, researchers and academia to tackle issues related to the global underemployment of forcibly displaced and stateless populations and to advance a just transition. The Office will partner with development actors to support investment in climate-resilient, sustainable, circular and inclusive markets and agrifood systems in refugee-hosting areas. UNHCR and the World Bank will expand the insect farming initiative in Malawi, Zimbabwe and South Sudan to include Chad, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda and Mexico. Insect farming for food, feed and fertilizer production can increase access to nutritious food and feed, create green jobs, improve the climate and the environment, and strengthen local economies.
Top ten operational budgets for Self-reliance, economic inclusion and livelihoods (USD millions)
UNHCR is dedicated to promoting the financial inclusion of refugees and will invest in specific, market-oriented employment and self-employment initiatives. UNHCR brings development expertise and can test or scale up new approaches, or build evidence to attract the right partners. Its activities will be evidence-based and focus on inclusion in the digital and financial economy, small business development, employment facilitation and linkages with social protection. As humanitarian funding is scarce and development funding often focused on a few countries, it is essential for UNHCR to step in and support governments, local communities and the private sector in maximizing the potential of refugees to contribute to local economies and rebuild their lives.
Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives partners with UNHCR to improve the self-reliance and livelihoods of refugees
Since 2021, Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives has contributed over $26 million to support more than 600,000 refugees, IDPs, and host community members in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East in the areas of food assistance, emergency response, and livelihoods. In Bangladesh, its sustainable livelihoods programme provides vulnerable refugee families with climate-smart agricultural skills and materials so that they can grow produce to consume and sell. The project has decreased dependence on food rations and empowered families to become self-sufficient.