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How we work

What we do

How we work

How we work can often be as important as what we do.

Learn more about UNHCR's cross-cutting ways of working, including inclusive and innovative programming and tackling sexual harassment.
A UNHCR staff member helps an elderly Syrian refugee woman to step down from a bus.

At UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, we recognize that how we work is often as important as what we do.

We aim to implement inclusive programming, recognizing that, like the rest of the world, communities of refugees, displaced and stateless people are diverse, and characteristics such as age, gender or ethnicity can leave some individuals more at risk and in need of specialized protection. 

We also adhere to the humanitarian principle of 'do no harm' and as such are working to tackle sexual harassment and abuse against the people we serve, together with sexual harassment in the workplace.

As we look to the future, the UNHCR Innovation Service is working to find new solutions and ways of working across areas of programming so we can more effectively support people forced to flee. We are also increasingly preparing for future protection challenges exacerbated by climate change and working to reduce our own environmental impact.


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Safeguarding individuals

Displaced and stateless communities are made up of diverse groups of people. Age, gender, social or legal status, disability and other characteristics can exacerbate inequality and limit opportunities.

Throughout our programming, we work to understand the different needs and protection risks and ensure no one is left out. We aim to make sure the most vulnerable, such as children on their own, or people who have survived torture or sexual and gender-based violence, can access extra protection and specialized care.  

We also aim to ensure continuous and meaningful engagement with refugees and host communities in designing and delivering programming.  

Learn more about Safeguarding individuals


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Tackling sexual exploitation, abuse and harassment

UNHCR aims to provide a safe, trusted, respectful and inclusive environment where the people we serve and those who work for the organization feel safe, heard, equipped and empowered to speak up for themselves and others and where sexual misconduct does not happen. 

Learn more about Tackling sexual abuse


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Innovation Service

With more people forcibly uprooted than ever before we must find innovative solutions to adapt and better deliver for people forced to flee.

The UNHCR Innovation Service develops, tests and scales new solutions and ideas, including in digital inclusion, data and AI, environmental response and refugee-led innovations.

Learn more about the UNHCR Innovation Service


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Environment, disasters and climate change

As we look to the future, we know climate change and the environment will continue to impact on our work at UNHCR and the lives of forcibly uprooted people around the world.

We are working to reduce our environmental impact, meet the protection challenges already being amplified by climate change and prepare for those to come.

Learn more about our work on Environment, disasters and climate change 


Please consider donating today

Your gift can help protect someone forced to flee their home due to conflict or persecution.