Airbnb has announced a new initiative called Donations that allows hosts to donate a portion of their income they make on Airbnb renting their own places to organizations that help displaced people find housing and shelter.
Donations works like this: an Airbnb host will tell the company what percentage of their payout they want to donate—this could be anything from 1% to 100% of their earnings. Airbnb will then send 100% of the donated funds to a nonprofit that helps people in need find temporary housing. At launch, the partnering nonprofit that will get the donations are International Rescue Committee, All Hands and Hearts, and the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Airbnb will then send regular updated to hosts who donate about how their contributions are helping people find shelter.
Airbnb Donations is an offshoot of an initiative Airbnb launched in 2017 called Open Homes, which allows Airbnb hosts to offer their home for free to shelter people in need, such as refugees or people displaced by natural disasters. Donations allows people to help others in a similar way without having to actually house someone yourself. Airbnb says that if all hosts in the U.S. donated just 1% of their earnings in the next year, the partnering nonprofits could shelter up to 2 million people in need.