Aurora Humanitarian Initiative Founders Help Complete Half-Million Dollar Campaign

Noubar & Anna Afeyan and Ruben Vardanyan support the Refugee Self-Reliance Matching Campaign by RefugePoint and Focusing Philanthropy

RefugePoint is pleased to announce that Noubar Afeyan and Ruben Vardanyan, founders of the Aurora Humanitarian Initiative, and Anna Afeyan have made significant contributions to RefugePoint’s Refugee Self-Reliance Matching Campaign in partnership with Focusing Philanthropy.

The Self-Reliance Campaign supports the most at-risk urban refugees through RefugePoint’s international network. To date, RefugePoint has helped to launch over 1,000 refugee businesses, including food stalls, carpentry and tailoring businesses, hair salons and secondhand clothing shops. RefugePoint staff monitor and advise entrepreneurs throughout all phases of small business planning, start-up, and expansion. Business support is preceded by a time-bound set of interventions designed to stabilize refugee families in the countries to which they have fled.

The campaign will provide funding to support and expand a model program, codify RefugePoint’s approach to share with others, and lead the Refugee Self Reliance Initiative (RSRI). The RSRI is an effort to help refugees rebuild their lives and become contributing members of their host communities, which is co-headed by Women’s Refugee Commission in partnership with more than 20 other organizations, foundations, governments, and the UN Refugee Agency.

“RefugePoint’s work aligns with the vision of the Aurora Humanitarian Initiative founders — myself, Ruben Vardanyan and Vartan Gregorian — to help refugees survive, revive, and thrive, a process that we’ve seen a generation of Armenian genocide survivors go through, including our own families. RefugePoint’s self-reliance programming is a critical start to this journey. We see in this innovative organization’s programming a new and more effective way to support refugees.”

Noubar Afeyan, Co-Founder of the Aurora Prize and Humanitarian Initiative

Founded on behalf of the survivors of the Armenian Genocide and in gratitude to their saviors, the Aurora Humanitarian Initiative seeks to empower modern-day saviors to offer life and hope to those in urgent need of basic humanitarian aid anywhere in the world and thus continue the cycle of giving internationally. The Aurora Humanitarian Initiative is Gratitude in Action. It is an eight-year commitment (2015 to 2023, in remembrance of the eight years of the Armenian Genocide 1915-1923), to promote global humanitarian projects and support people who are addressing the needs of the most helpless and destitute, often doing so at great personal risk.

Focusing Philanthropy believes extraordinary impact is possible if we focus on root causes, maximize leverage, act on solid information, and pool our efforts. Focusing Philanthropy believes donations should be made with the same level of strategic intent, information, and confidence as other investments. That is why Focusing Philanthropy targets serious human challenges that individual donors can successfully address; chooses tactics that are demonstrably effective; identifies confidence-inspiring implementing partners; conducts ongoing monitoring, and assures substantive reporting.

“Focusing Philanthropy seeks proven-effective intervention methods that are life-changing and offers extraordinary giving opportunities in concert with well-vetted nonprofits. We are proud to partner with RefugePoint and to match the Aurora Humanitarian Initiative Founders’ gift to create even greater impact.”

Larry Gilson, Founder of Focusing Philanthropy

RefugePoint is a non-profit organization that finds lasting solutions for the world’s most at risk refugees and supports the humanitarian community to do the same. The organization focuses on expanding refugee resettlement and self-reliance opportunities. RefugePoint envisions an inclusive world where refugees are supported to rebuild their lives, reach their full potential and contribute to their communities.

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