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Novo Nordisk Foundation earmarks DKK 20 million for Afghan refugees

Photo: ©UNHCR/Asif Shahzad

Over the past 40 years, conflict in Afghanistan has forced millions of people to flee, both within their country and in the region. The current humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan can put further pressure on the region, which increasingly needs help to scale up preparedness and ensure humanitarian assistance to both existing Afghan refugees and possible new arrivals.

A grant totalling DKK 20 million awarded by the Novo Nordisk Foundation will assist UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, to contribute to improving the life of Afghan refugees in Pakistan.

Danish Minister for Development, Flemming Møller Mortensen, says:

“The humanitarian needs in Afghanistan, and among refugees in neighboring countries, are massive, heartbreaking even. For this reason, the Danish government has significantly increased its humanitarian support for the Afghan population since 15th of August. The partnership with UNHCR is crucial to ensure the protection of internally displaced people in Afghanistan and protection of the Afghani people who have fled across borders to the neighboring countries. I am very pleased to see private organisations such as Novo Nordisk Foundation supporting the efforts by offering this impressive contribution to the activities of UNHCR in Pakistan. Working in the same direction enables us to help many more people.”

The grant will be used for projects focused on providing basic necessities, including shelter, health care, psychosocial support, education, and child protection.

“This important grant from the Novo Nordisk Foundation will create positive impact on the lives of thousands of Afghan women, men and children who need support,” says Noriko Yoshida, UNHCR Representative in Pakistan.

“It will greatly strengthen UNHCR’s work on developing concrete humanitarian solutions and create hope for a better future for Afghan refugees.”

For many years the countries neighbouring Afghanistan have been generously hosting a large number of Afghan refugees.

“Afghanistan’s neighbours need all the help they can get so they can take care of the millions of people who have fled and be prepared for possible new refugee arrivals. For example, Pakistan has hosted Afghan refugees for more than 40 years, and today hosts 1.4 million registered Afghan refugees. We hope that the grant to UNHCR can further support Afghan refugees and host communities in the most heavily impacted areas,” says Mette Ide Davidsen, Acting Head of the Novo Nordisk Foundation’s department for social and humanitarian affairs.

The project will be completed over the next year.

This grant follows another grant from the Novo Nordisk Foundation of DKK 2 million in August that also aims to provide emergency aid to the people of Afghanistan. Read more here.

Further information

Marie-Louise Jersin, Senior Communications Partner, +45 3049 4957, [email protected]