IKEA Canada is providing Syrian refugees settling in Canada with $180,000 in donated furniture to help them create a place to call home.
The initiative will be carried out through the company’s Refugee Settlement Support program, which evenly splits the total project budget to each of the 12 IKEA stores and six pick-up and order locations across Canada.
“At IKEA Canada we know the home is the most important place in the world,” said Stefan Sjöstrand, President of IKEA Canada, in a statement. “By offering donations of home furnishings for refugees, we are not only providing the basic necessities for their new life in Canada, but more importantly offering the comforts of home in a time when they need it the most.”
On a first-come-first served basis, registered Canadian charities have until March 31 to request support for families residing within a one hour drive time of an IKEA location.
Each family or household can receive up to $5,000 worth in furniture to support their basic household needs. This includes bed frames, mattresses, linens, cookware, tableware, appliances, lighting, dining room tables, chairs, children’s toys, books, and living room seating.
The federal government is committed to bringing 25,000 refugees to Canada by the end of February 2016. Several hundred refugees, the first group of settlers fleeing war-torn Syria, arrived on Canadian soil last week.
IKEA’s Canadian furniture donation initiative also runs alongside the company’s international ‘Brighter Lives for Refugees’ campaign to raise money around the world to assist the UNHCR, the United Nations’ Refugee Agency. In 2014, the program raised $14.6 million globally to help provide solar street lights, solar powered lanterns, and solar energy systems in refugee camps in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia.
Sometime over the next several weeks, construction will begin on a solar farm at the Azraq refugee camp in Jordan, where 27,000 Syrian refugees are currently residing. The two megawatt power plant will generate $1.92 million worth of electricity annually.