What are pledges?

Find out how to deliver long-term solutions for refugees, forcibly displaced and stateless people and their generous hosts
A girl and a boy walk along a canal in an irrigated farming land in Melkadida, Ethiopia.

What are pledges?

Find out how to deliver long-term solutions for refugees, forcibly displaced and stateless people and their generous hosts
Ethiopia. Investment builds resilience for refugees and host communities

Pledges and contributions are commitments by States, organizations, businesses, academics and refugees themselves that advance the objectives of the Global Compact on Refugees. 

States and other stakeholders have the continued opportunity to announce concrete pledges and contributions that will achieve tangible benefits for refugees and host communities.

"[The resolution affirming the Global Compact on Refugees] calls upon the international community as a whole, including States and other relevant stakeholders, to implement the Global Compact on Refugees, through concrete actions, pledges and contributions."

Introductory Note by UNHCR, Global Compact on Refugees Booklet - United Nations, New York, 2018

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What constitutes a pledge/contribution?
  • Financial, material, or technical assistance;
  • Places for resettlement and complementary pathways for admission to third countries; and
  • Other actions that States and others have elected to take, for example, at the policy level through policies and practices to promote refugee inclusion, or launching a new initiative.
What are the areas of focus for pledges and contributions?

Pledges related to all four objectives of the Global Compact on Refugees are welcome:

  • Ease the pressures on host countries
  • Enhance refugee self-reliance
  • Expand access to third-country solutions
  • Support conditions in countries of origin for return in safety and dignity

Following the first Global Refugee Forum in 2019 and beyond, States and other stakeholders are encouraged to make commitments in the following areas to provide a strategic focus and maximize our collective impact: 

Arrangements for burden and responsibility sharing:

  • Funding and the effective and efficient use of resources
  • Regional and sub-regional approaches
  • Support platforms
  • Data and evidence
  • Prevention and addressing root causes

Areas in need of support:

  • Education
  • Jobs and livelihoods
  • Energy and infrastructure
  • Solutions
  • Protection capacity

Within an area of focus, such as education, contributions could address:

  • a sub-theme (such as higher education);
  • a specific refugee situation (such as education in the Somalia situation); and/or
  • a specific group (such as education for girls)
What are key considerations for developing pledges and contributions?
  • Support or facilitate the achievement of the objectives of the Global Compact on Refugees
  • Address one or more of the areas of focus for the first Global Refugee Forum, where possible
  • Contribute to burden and responsibility sharing
  • Broaden the support base beyond countries and stakeholders that have traditionally contributed to responses to large-scale refugee situations
  • Respond to identified needs and have tangible benefits for refugees and host communities
  • Be developed and/or implemented in partnership with other stakeholders, including refugees and host populations
  • Take into account age, gender, disability, and diversity considerations
  • Make a sustained, positive difference in the lives of refugees and host communities
  • Be new or additional (which could include strengthening and building upon good practices or ongoing commitments, particularly since 2016, when the development of the Global Compact on Refugees commenced
  • Be realistic, forward-looking, specific, and action-oriented
  • Be measureable within a specified period, where possible, bearing in mind the opportunities for stocktaking in 2021 and 2023
Who can make pledges and contributions?
  • UN Member States and observer States
  • Relevant stakeholders such as international organizations within and outside the United Nations system, including those forming part of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement; other humanitarian and development actors; international and regional financial institutions; regional organizations; local authorities; civil society, including faith-based organizations; academics and other experts; the private sector; media; host community members, and refugees themselves (Global Compact on Refugees, para. 3).

States and other stakeholders may make contributions either individually or jointly.

What is a joint contribution?

In the spirit of the Global Compact on Refugees, joint contributions in particular could help to focus on longer-term cooperation and to build a broad, sustainable base of support for refugees and their hosts.

Joint contributions could include:

Partnership contributions

A group of States and/or other stakeholders form partnerships and announce contributions (based upon their respective capacities and areas of expertise) towards the achievement of a shared goal.

For example: to support the decision of a host country to implement a policy providing refugee children with access to the national education system, donors could provide the necessary additional financial, material, and technical assistance through funding, providing training for teachers, and building new school infrastructure.

Common contributions

A coalition of States or other stakeholders would announce identical or near-identical commitments. For example, a group of States could announce that they will each include refugees in their Voluntary National Reporting for the Sustainable Development Goals. 

What is pledge matching?

Contributions announced by States or other stakeholders can be matched in scale and scope by contributions from other stakeholders. For example, a private sector actor may pledge to contribute $10 for every $10 pledged by other entities to support a specific refugee situation. Find out more.




Will you make a pledge?

Pledge concrete steps and change the lives of refugees and host communities.

Submit a pledge