Adopt-a-Future | Night of 1,000 Dinners

UNA-NY Campaign to Support
Refugee Education in Kenya



Join UNA-NY in Our Commitment to Raise Funds for Supporting Education in One of the World's Largest Refugee Camps

This year, in honor of UN World Refugee Day, many people will be having dinners, cocktail parties, luncheons, cookouts, pizza bashes, or the like — to bring people together to support an initiative that helps provide education to refugee children.

Adopt-A-Future — to Help Refugee Children

It is currently estimated that over 65 million people around the world have been forcibly displaced from their homes, the highest figure ever recorded. Approximately 600,000 refugees currently reside in Kenya; more than half of these refugees are under 18 years old.

UNA-USA is partnering with the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and its fundraising arm (USA for UNHCR), to provide direct support for refugee education overseas and welcome refugee families at home, and to support the UN in assisting refugees and resolving the conflicts that create them.

Their Adopt-A-Future campaign supports refugee children worldwide, and is currently giving special emphasis to Kenya. The country has absorbed thousands of new refugees from conflicts in the Democratic Republic of Congo, South Sudan and Somalia, while receiving little media attention and very limited philanthropic support. In the current year, the program will focus on supporting schools in two UNHCR camps in Kenya (Dadaab and Kakuma).

This year, the United Nations Association of New York (UNA-NY) is adopting the Furaha School in Dadaab, Kenya as part of its commitment to the campaign, in collaboration with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

School Name: Furaha Primary School
Location: Dadaab Refugee Camp, Kenya 
Student Breakdown: 1331 Male, 613 Female

In contrast to funds raised at Individual donor levels, that are used to widely provide student needs such as school supplies and uniforms throughout many UNHCR-supported schools in camps and community settings worldwide, our UNA New York Chapter has instead chosen to support the Division-level goal of helping a specific school — in this case, raising $30,000 to help build much needed classrooms for the Furaha School in the Dadaab camp.

Existing since 1991, Dadaab is the world's largest refugee camp (its population the size of a city like New Orleans). It contains 50 schools, some with better facilities than most regions of Somalia (where many refugees are from), and there are only seven secondary (high) schools. In general, hundreds of students are forced to sit and study outside in the heat and dust because the number of classrooms are insufficient or already overflowing. According to UNICEF, there is one school that has 4,036 students with only 25 classrooms and only one teacher for every 168 students.

Additionally, the Kenyan government has been anxious to repatriate the refugees and was recently prevented from closing the camp altogether. On the other hand, further situational improvements are expected from the upcoming third London conference on Somalia, where economic development, issues of political reform and governance, and improved security to prevent conflicts in that country will be addressed, and new partnership agreements signed. All of these factors make it vital for refugees to continue their education to upper levels, so that those who are ready can return home and directly participate in their country's restoration.

Adopt a Future on the Night of 1,000 Dinners —
Here's a Q+A Rundown of How it Works

◙  When can the event take place?
    June 20 (or anytime in June)

We invite all members and associates of our UNA New York City chapter to participate this June, by hosting or organizing a dinner event — at home, or in your community — to help us meet our goal, by raising the funds to assist refugee children who currently have no access to education.

The Night of a Thousand Dinners concept is simple: individuals can host a dinner in their homes for their friends and family and collect contributions from their guests. (Others might throw a cocktail party or a picnic bash, or even involve a local restaurant.) The guest contribution amount is determined by the host or donor, and can range from $25 per guest to $1,000 or more. Hosts will forward the collected funds to UNA-NY.

◙  Are There Matching Contributions For This Campaign?

This year, all funds raised in support of Adopt-a-Future will be matched by the Educate a Child Fund of Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser of Qatar and other philanthropic partners — so you will double the impact of this initiative!

◙  How will my donation be used?

The $30,000 raised through dinner events held by particpants like you— alongside the matching funds from high-net worth donors (such as Educate a Child Fund) — is enough to create or expand classrooms, providing for 35-40 students (according to UNHCR Field Guildlines) for over 10 years. So all the funds that you help your New York UNA Chapter to raise will ensure that over 400 students will benefit from this project.

◙  Can my donation be claimed as a charitable donation?

Yes. UNA-NY will give 100% of your tax-deductible donation to UNHCR to be used directly for the Furaha Primary School. 

◙  Can I make additional or non-event donations?

If you would rather make a donation and not participate in the dinner event, you may do it online here. Individual donors are also able to make offline donations using the "UNA Adopt A Future Individual Donation Form" which can be found here

◙  How do I get started?

  • Begin by planning your event, then fill out and submit this Pledge Form. It will help UNA-NY assess the scope of your event and offer advice if necessary.
  • Further information and resources, like fundraising toolkit and social media graphics, can be found here — which will assist you in organizing and planning your event, as well as supplying helpful facts and talking points you can use to inform your guests about the campaign and how their contributions will support the refugees and their school.
  • All donations collected from your planned event can be made securely online via Paypal here, or by sending a check to UNA-NY to this address:

    United Nations Association of New York
    380 Lexington Avenue
    17th Floor
    New York, NY 10168

Thanks for making a difference —
together we can give refugee children the education they deserve!

Additional Information

For additional information or suggestion ideas for your event, please contact our Executive Director, Ann Nicol, or call 212-907-1353.