Praise Ikea for Housing Thousands of Refugees

Better-Shelter-5-994x1024 via ikea

Target: Per Heggenes, Chief Executive Officer, IKEA Foundation

Goal: Applaud Ikea’s deployment of 10,000 portable housing units to Iraqi refugee camps.

Furniture giant Ikea has recently deployed 10,000 newly-designed shelters to Iraq, where they will house tens of thousands of refugees. The homes, called Better Shelters, are durable, weatherproof, and collapsible and can be assembled in four hours. Each unit can house a family of five for at least three years, in stark contrast with standard refugee tents which are much smaller and last for only a few months.

Each unit comes equipped with the tools and instructions necessary to build it. The Better Shelters feature mosquito nets, lockable doors, ventilation, and solar-powered lamps. While these features may seem trivial, they have the potential to greatly improve quality of life for countless people. For example, lockable doors will better protect refugee women from the rampant sexual assault within these camps.

Currently, Iraqi refugee camps are housing an estimated 2.5 million people displaced due to internal conflict and the advancement of Islamic State into Iraq. The camps also house over 200,000 Syrian refugees. The displacement of millions of refugees from Iraq is the largest ever seen in the recorded history of the Middle East.

Not only will these homes provide shelter for tens of thousands of refugees, but they will help return a sense of humanity to people who have spent years of their lives in cramped, unprotected tents. Sign the petition below to applaud Ikea for providing shelter and amenities for refugees in Iraq.


Dear Per Heggenes,

Ten thousand portable and collapsible homes, called Better Shelters, have been deployed by Ikea and the United Nations to refugees in Iraq, where they will provide shelter for tens of thousands of men, women, and children. The shelters include small amenities such as locking doors, mosquito nets, and solar-powered lamps that will greatly increase the quality of life for refugees and the safety in the camps. These homes are much larger and more durable, and will last between 3-20 years in comparison to the three month lifespan of the current tents.

Due to internal conflict and the advancement of Islamic State militants into the country, Iraq has the largest number of displaced citizens ever recorded in the Middle East. By providing these homes, Ikea is providing a sense of stability and a few simple amenities that will have a great impact on the lives of many. We, the undersigned, thank you for your efforts to provide homes for Iraq’s most vulnerable.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Ikea

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