IKEA Brings Light to Refugee Camps

#BrighterLives4Refugees is Back!

February 2, 2015

Together with the IKEA Foundation we are excited to launch the return of the Brighter Lives for Refugees campaign to raise millions of dollars for refugees living around the world. This marks the second year of the campaign. Last year’s campaign raised over 10 Million to support innovation and sustainable energy projects in refugee camps.

For every LED light bulb purchased in IKEA stores in February and March, the IKEA Foundation will donate $1 to help the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) light refugee camps—making them a safer, more suitable place for the many families who live there.


Why this campaign matters

Refugee camps can be dark places. Literally.

Today, there are nearly 11.7 million refugees under UNHCR’s care around the world – half of which are children. Many have no choice but to live in refugee camps, where an absence or lack of light after sunset can have a devastating effect on safety and security. Without light, simple activities such as visiting the toilet, collecting water, returning to the shelter from elsewhere or completing homework after dark can become difficult and dangerous, particularly for women and girls.

What a difference a little light can make

Providing sustainable lighting can have a huge effect on the quality of life in a refugee camp:

  • Solar lanterns help children study after dark, improving results in school.
  • Solar street lights enable people to have more community gatherings and social activities.
  • Solar lanterns allow refugees to continue important income-generating activities, such as weaving or sewing, long after the sun goes down.
  • Solar lanterns enable refugees to run their small shops and kiosks into the evening so they can earn a sustainable income.

How You Can Help

  • Remember to purchase LEDARE light bulbs in participating IKEA stores across the United States (and world if you are traveling!). For every lightbulb you buy – $1 will be donated to UNHCR and help create brighter lives for refugees.
  • Take photos while shopping! If you are in an IKEA store and see our display information or you purchase a lightbulb, make sure to take a photo and post it on social media using #BrighterLives4Refugees and tag @unrefugeeagency on Twitter.
  • Tell your friends and family! Everybody loves IKEA – so remind your friends and family about the promotion. Share the below image on Facebook or Twitter.