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Who We Help

Who We Help
© UNHCR/E.Denholm, December 2007

Millions of Vulnerable People Around the World

UNHCR's primary purpose is to safeguard the rights and well-being of refugees. To this end, we strive to ensure that everyone can exercise the right to seek asylum and find safe refuge in another country, and to return home voluntarily. By helping refugees go back home or to settle in another country, UNHCR also seeks lasting solutions to their plight. UNHCR also has a mandate to prevent and reduce statelessness and protect stateless persons. In support of its core activities on behalf of refugees, UNHCR's Executive Committee and the UN General Assembly have authorized involvement with other groups. These include former refugees who have returned home and internally displaced people.

UNHCR seeks to reduce situations of forced displacement by encouraging states and other institutions to create conditions which are conducive to the protection of human rights and the peaceful resolution of disputes. In all of its activities, the refugee agency pays particular attention to the needs of children and seeks to promote the equal rights of women and girls.


Refugees are our core constituents and we care for them in every corner of the globe.


Returnees are the ones who get to go back home - the best durable solution.

Stateless People

Millions of stateless people are left in a legal limbo, with limited basic rights.


Asylum-seekers need essential help and advice while applying for refugee status.

Internally Displaced People

The internally displaced seek safety in other parts of their country, where they need help.




People with Disabilities

People with disabilities remain largely invisible or forgotten in their uprooted communities.


Women and girls can be especially vulnerable to abuse in mass displacement situations.


Almost half the people of concern to UNHCR are children. They need special care.

Older People

Older people have specific needs that are often neglected in planning and programming.