REI raises funds to support projects that provide opportunities for people to lead an independent normal life while staying near to home and their loved ones; projects that enable people to give back to the community and make valuable contributions to the local economy as well as rebuild their own future. These projects offer counseling, rehabilitation, skills training, and education in order to provide hope for the future and the means for an eventual return to independence.
The maximum amount awarded to an individual project per year is US$25,000. Since 1979, REI has funded more than 800 projects worth cumulatively over US$11 million.
REI funding supports refugees, IDPs (internally displaced persons) and returnees (refugees returning home) – people who are some of the world’s most vulnerable.
It is not the refugee outflows that cause terrorism, it is terrorism, tyranny and war that create refugees. —Antonio Guterres, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees 2005–2015
“Owing to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of his nationality, and is unable to, or owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail himself of the protection of that country.” This definition also applies to people who have been displaced within their own country (IDPs).
Currently war and armed conflict uproots an average of 32,000 people every day worldwide, decimating their lives and entire communities. Globally the number of forcibly displaced people is estimated at 65.5 million, but is likely to be higher. This constitutes nearly one percent of the global population or about 50 percent of the population of Japan.
Refugees are people just like you and me. They come from all walks of life. They are doctors, IT graduates, teachers, artists, farmers, business people, academics, students, children and many others. They want what we want: sustenance, shelter, medical care, education for their children and themselves, and most of all, a normal life with dignity and a clearer future. REI exists to provide opportunities for refugees to reach these aims, which most of us often take for granted.
REI operates according to a strict code of accountability and transparency, so that you can see for yourself exactly where, when and how your donation is making a difference. We assess all funding applications against strict criteria. Recipients of funds must provide references, audited accounts and written reports. REI will undertake field visits to assess a situation at first hand.
Our approach to selecting projects emphasizes community and sustainability. Community involvement is essential to ensure that projects effectively address the specific needs of each community in a way that is sustainable and far-reaching. Correspondingly, the emphasis on sustainability ensures that beneficiary communities do not become reliant on funding, but rather develop self-sufficient means of rebuilding the strength within the community.
REI is registered NPO no. 0104-05-015803