We’ve accomplished so much since we began in 2005, and we invite you to explore this timeline, which highlights our top 15 milestones over the past 15 years.
In 2005, RefugePoint (which at that time was known as Mapendo) was founded to serve a small group of refugees in Nairobi, Kenya. These refugees had been attacked in refugee camps in Kenya and had been ostracized from their communities because many were HIV positive. They had fled to Nairobi and lived in desperation. They had nowhere to turn for help since no aid organizations served such individuals outside of the refugee camps. With private funding, RefugePoint began providing them with medical assistance and helping to resettle them.
In 2005, we had a team of five staff members. Fifteen years later, we now have more than 115 in the RefugePoint family. Early on, a clear mission emerged: to reach those in peril — the overlooked, the forgotten. We wanted to help those stuck indefinitely where they were to build better, more normal lives, and to relocate those who could not stay safely where they were to countries like the U.S. and Canada.
Since 2005, we’ve helped more than 87,000 refugees to access resettlement. Through training, global policy influence, and other activities, we’ve contributed to a system that has referred 1.5 million refugees for resettlement in the past 15 years. Collectively, we’ve worked in 214 locations across 45 countries.
We’ve also started expanding relocation opportunities by helping refugees with family reunification, labor mobility, and education visas. We help an additional 12,000 refugees a year take steps towards a better life and self-reliance through our Urban Refugee Protection Program in Nairobi. We’ve used our success there to build a global effort, in collaboration with partners, called the Refugee Self-Reliance Initiative, the goal of which is to enable refugees to stand on their own two feet.
It’s taken private funding, innovation, determination, collaboration, and a moral conviction that our purpose is to find solutions for those who have no one else.