Airbnb hosts have a new way to give back to displaced people in their communities: a Donations tool. The San Francisco company announced that starting today, rentees in the U.S. (and soon anywhere Airbnb is available) can choose to donate a portion of their income to philanthropic organizations that support housing needs.
It goes toward Airbnb’s goal of placing 100,000 people in need of temporary housing by 2022.
Airbnb says that 100% of Donations contributions go to trusted nonprofit partners that help communities find housing, including Hands and Hearts, the Make-A-Wish Foundation, the International Rescue Committee, and Mercy Corps. Hosts who opt in can choose which percentage they want to have automatically deducted from each payout, and they’ll get regular updates via email and an annual donations report outlining how their contribution made a difference.
Donations can be paused, changed, or stopped from Airbnb’s Host Dashboard.
Airbnb estimates that if every host in the U.S. contributed 1% of their earnings, its partners could help find temporary housing for two million people in 2019. “Many hosts in our community are eager to help when a crisis hits, but aren’t always able to open their homes. We developed this donations tool to give them an easy, straightforward way to make an impact,” said Airbnb cofounder and chief product officer Joe Gebbia. “We hope that through the company’s contributions, the Open Homes program, and our hosts’ generous donations, we can extend belonging to those who are facing their darkest hour.”
Donations build on Airbnb’s Open Homes program, which enables hosts to open their homes for free to people affected by conflict, disaster, or critical illness. Airbnb says that the Open Homes community has helped over 25,000 people in need find temporary housing to date, and it says it’s invested $20 million in 2019 to grow its platform and increase its contributions to partners.
“Airbnb has been a long time supporter of All Hands and Hearts, offering housing solutions for our teams and volunteers in the wake of devastating disasters,” said cofounder of All Hands and Heart Petra Nemcova. “We’re grateful for the Airbnb community’s support, and hopeful that with Airbnb hosts’ donations, we’ll be able to help more individuals, families, and communities rebuild their homes, schools, and lives.”