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UNHCR and Islamic Development Bank Launch Global Islamic Fund for Refugees

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UNHCR and Islamic Development Bank Launch Global Islamic Fund for Refugees

31 March 2022

Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia – UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and Islamic Development Bank (IsDB)’s poverty alleviation arm, the Islamic Solidarity Fund for Development (ISFD), have signed an agreement to launch the Global Islamic Fund for Refugees, an innovative, sustainable and Sharia-compliant resource mobilization instrument that will open new Islamic philanthropy funding in support of millions of forcibly displaced people.

The agreement comes at a time when forced displacement has reached unprecedented levels and has become a critical global humanitarian and development crisis, requiring intensive, comprehensive and collaborative international action.

“Forced displacement needs are at a record high and continue to rise. No institution alone could carry the burden. We need to strengthen existing partnerships and explore innovative solutions for the plight of the forcibly displaced,” said IsDB Group President, H.E. Dr. Muhammad Al Jasser. “We are proud of our partnership with UNHCR and are confident that our joint efforts will provide the necessary mechanisms to assist those in need.”

The initiative stems from ISFD and UNHCR’s respective mandates. It aims to provide effective, efficient, and predictable support to programs and projects for refugees, IDPs and host communities in Organisation of Islamic Cooperation member states, which are concentrated in regions that produce and host high numbers of refugees.

“Millions continue to be forced from their homes due to war, violence, persecution and discrimination and they need and deserve our support,” said the United Nations’ High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi. “Innovative sources of Islamic social financing, such as this groundbreaking agreement with the Islamic Development Bank, will enable UNHCR to help refugees and other forcibly displaced people with the protection and assistance needed to live in better, more dignified conditions. We are grateful to ISFD for its steadfast support and ongoing partnership. This initiative will unlock much-needed financial support to address the acute needs of those forcibly displaced.”

The agreement to launch the Global Islamic Fund for Refugees is an important step towards diversifying humanitarian funding sources and bolstering humanitarian relief efforts. The Fund will help mobilize immediate and multi-year funding in support of humanitarian programs and operations, in situations of forced displacement and across sectors.  

For more information on this topic, please contact:


  • Khaled Kabbara; Communications Officer- GCC Countries; [email protected]; +971 50 641 0868


  • Khemais El Gazzah; Lead, ISFD Poverty Alleviation Programs; [email protected]; +966556767722