How to Help: Refugee Crisis in Europe

From Syria, Afghanistan, North Africa, and beyond, migrants are fleeing conflict in a desperate bid to reach Europe and safety.

(Photo: International Rescue Committee/Facebook)

Sep 3, 2015· 1 MIN READ
Shaya Tayefe Mohajer is TakePart's News Editor.

Stunning images this week of the body of a Syrian toddler who washed ashore have brought much-needed attention to a global refugee crisis. Desperate masses of people are trying to reach European soil, highlighting a stark statistic: In a world where the Islamic State pillages and dictators ravage, 60 million people were displaced by war, conflict, and persecution in 2014, according to the United Nations.

What’s more, more than 13 million children from the Middle East and North Africa have been prevented from attending school because of “surging conflict and political upheaval,” according to a report released Thursday by the United Nations.

The numbers are enormous and the problem can seem overwhelming, but experts are on the ground doing the sort of work that desperately needs to be done.

Here are a few nonprofits whose work is worth supporting with your donations and pledges.

Carry the Future

This group, started by a mom in California, is asking people to donate lightly used baby carriers to help refugees carry their children as they walk to safety. They also accept monetary donations and need volunteers to help deliver the carriers. You can find out more here.

International Rescue Committee

This group is providing medical care and supplies to refugees in Greece and advocating for Europe and the U.S. to resettle more refugees safely through its #RefugeesWelcome campaign.


The United Nations agency is setting up “children-friendly” zones for refugees at border crossings and refugee camps, bringing a bit of comfort and normalcy to kids who long for a faraway home. Make a gift here.


CARE provides humanitarian services for refugees in Serbia, including distributing CARE packages that include food, water, and hygiene items for women. Here’s where to donate.

Human Rights Watch

As it does in many places in the world, Human Rights Watch is documenting human rights violations against refugees in Turkey, Greece, and other destination countries—and it could use your donation.

Refugees Welcome

Have a spare room in Germany? Willing to host a refugee? Refugees Welcome, an AirBnb-like site, says it will match hosts with those in need. It asks hosts to commit to a minimum of three months for the sake of refugees seeking stability.

Doctors Without Borders

In the Mediterranean Sea, the main route of passage for refugees, Doctors Without Borders has three ships that rove the waters for migrants who become stranded or have trouble at sea.

“A mass grave is being created in the Mediterranean Sea,” says Loris De Filippi, president of the group’s chapter in Italy. To help Doctors Without Borders save lives, donate here.