Airbnb launches Open Homes in Italy to help refugees in need

From today local Italians are able to open their home on Airbnb to welcome refugees and displaced people thanks to the Open Homes project.

The initiative was launched in Milan in collaboration with the Municipality and with Refugees Welcome Italia and The community of Sant’Egidio, NGOs already working to provide support for refugees.

Both NGOs, depending on the contingency imposed by refugee flows, will be able to log into the Airbnb platform to check availability of – and book – beds suitable for their current needs. Hosts will be able to share their homes with people in need by applying through airbnb.it/welcome/refugees. Already active Airbnb hosts can share their listing for free in just a few clicks, while new hosts will be taken through the process with a step by step guide on how to create a new listing.

Along with Rome, Milan is a pilot city for the program, but you can register your listing on Open Homes across the country.

“We will support this beautiful initiative in any way possible, and we are very proud of Milan for being the first city to launch it in Italy. Milan citizens are always very supportive of new and challenging projects, among many the one launched a year and half ago where families hosted refugees from all over the world. They have been very intense experiences, both for the families and for the refugees, but we’re proud to be involved in vital work that’s still ongoing.”

COUNCILLOR FOR SOCIAL AFFAIRS PIERFRANCESCO MAJORINO

Milan’s community has already proven its generosity to help those in need. Last year, hosts opened up their homes for free to the relatives of some patients hospitalized in Milan, a project promoted by the Municipality in collaboration with the NGO I sei Petali.

Only some days ago, on  World Refugee Day, Antonella, a host from Milan, opened her home for a dinner organized by the Milan Home Sharing Club along with some refugees and representatives of the associations Refugees Welcome and the community of Sant’Egidio. Councillor Pierfrancesco Majorino and Airbnb Italy Country Manager Matteo Stifanelli attended, too. It was an evening dedicated to dialogue: Refugees Welcome invited Miriam, who has already hosted some refugees, having fled their home for safety, in her home.

“We are very happy to merge the skills of Refugees Welcome and the Community of Sant’Egidio with the solidarity of the Airbnb host community. We’re proud to be working together with the Municipality, in helping people in need, those who’ve had to leave everything behind.”

AIRBNB ITALY COUNTRY MANAGER MATTEO STIFANELLI

Airbnb is committed to supplying shelter to 100,000 people around the world over the next five years.

The Open Homes project will help us achieve this target as it provides humantiarian agencies and NGOs an easy way of finding homes and helps our host community looking to support those in need.


The Airbnb mission is to create a world where everyone can feel at home anywhere, and has been working for many years to support refugees and displaced people. Here are some of our past projects.

  • We offered free hospitality for over 6,000 nights to humanitarian workers during the refugee crisis in Kos, Lesbo, Giannina, Atene and the Balkans.
  • Last year our community raised $1 million for the UNHCR refugee project.
  • During hurricane Sandy in 2012 the Airbnb Community offered to host displaced people. The idea inspired Airbnb to launch the Disaster Relief project. Since then, the program has provided temporary housing to people around the world hit by natural disasters.

  • Since November 2016 more than 550 Airbnb hosts and refugees have shared lunch or dinner together,in order to get to know each other better. During the course of 2017 we’ll expand this initiative, allowing our Community to offer a warm meal and to bond with the future citizens.
  • When the United States prevented some people from entering the country, thousands of our Airbnb community offered to open their homes to those displaced.
  • At the beginning of 2017, Airbnb committed to contribute to the International Rescue Committee by giving $4 million dollars distributed over the next 4 years to help support the international refugee relief effort.


 

Want to list your home on Open Homes?

Here is how it works.

  • Start creating an Airbnb account or, for already existing users, register with the Open Homes program.
  • Pick an already existing listing or create one for the cause you are supporting. Let us know how often you would like to make your home available for people in need.
  • Pick a cause to support and decide when to open your home. You will be contacted directly by authorized organizations that will recommend a length of stay.
  • Airbnb started collaborating with trusted agencies, specialized in finding temporary housing for people in need. These partners select the most suitable homes for the people they are helping and talk to the owners to make sure they have the right kind of accommodation.
  • If you have any further question please click here to find out more. If you work for an organization that is willing to collaborate with us, please contact us at [email protected]