$1.18 Million Being Given to Historically Excluded Refugee-Led Organizations

Press Release


Contact: Graham Kembo, Asylum Access / RRLI graham.kembo@asylumaccess.org

GHENT, BELGIUM – Today, the Resourcing Refugee Leadership Initiative (RRLI) is pleased to announce the 12 new refugee-led organizations (RLOs) who will receive a combined total of $1.18 million in funding for fiscal year 2022-2023. The 12 RLOs are based in Colombia, Egypt, Indonesia, Lebanon and Uganda.

Co-founded in 2021, RRLI is a coalition of 6 refugee-led organizations that are unlocking an unprecedented amount of funding for organizations that are founded and led by forcibly displaced communities to close the gap caused by excluding local organizations from international refugee response funding. 

“We want to create a world where the inherent structures of exclusion are dismantled, where the right to self-representation is upheld, and resources are shifted to those with proximity. Solutions and policies about refugees must be crafted by communities who themselves have experienced forced displacement,” says Sana Ali Mustafa, CEO of Asylum Access, a RRLI coalition member.

RRLI is a global coalition of RLOs that was formed to uplift communities and combat systematic refugee exclusion within refugee response. The coalition includes Asylum Access in the US, Mexico, Malaysia and Thailand; Basmeh & Zeitooneh in Lebanon; Refugiados Unidos in Colombia; Refugees & Asylum seekers Information Centre (RAIC) in Indonesia; St. Andrew’s Refugee Services (StARS) in Egypt; and Young African Refugees for Integral Development (YARID) in Uganda.

“Together with our coalition members, we make sure that people of forced displacement are equitably resourced to address the needs of their communities and participate in shaping policies that affect their lives,” says Robert Hakiza, Executive Director of Young African Refugees for Integral Development (YARID), a RRLI coalition member.

In May 2021, the Resourcing Refugee Leadership Initiative was selected as the winner of the $10 million Larsen Lam ICONIQ Impact Award, one of the largest ever investments in the refugee leadership movement. This award was the first step in their efforts to establish the first-of-its-kind RLO-to-RLO fund, a fund managed by refugees for refugees. RRLI has established a funding and support model that will enable at least 50 RLOs to sustain and scale their impact within the next five years. Through this effort, they will reach over 1,000,000 people across every major refugee-hosting region globally with holistic, community-driven support and solutions. 

“With this latest round of grants, RRLI has now funded over $3.6 million directly to refugee-led organizations since receiving the Larsen Lam Award in 2021. We have also committed over $10 million to future grants so that refugee-led organizations can continue serving their communities with robust and proximate solutions, says Mozhgan Moarefizadeh, Executive Director of the Refugees and Asylum seekers Information Centre, a RRLI coalition member.

A full list of the 2022 RRLI fund grantees and the countries they operate in can be found below:

  • Egypt: Faysel Community School – Cairo, New Vision, Tafawol Association for Special Needs and Development
  • Colombia: El Derecho a No Obedecer and Fundación Radaber
  • Indonesia: Refugee Learning Centre, Care the Displaced Children (CDC), and HELP for Refugees
  • Lebanon: Ettijahat – Independent Culture and Makani
  • Uganda: Tomorrow Vijana and Kandaakiat