Google Inc has announced a donation-matching campaign that aims to raise $11 million for humanitarian organisations aiding thousands of refugees that have overwhelmed European nations as they flee war-torn and impoverished countries.
The search giant said it will match the first $5.5 million worth of donations globally at google.com/refugeerelief until it raises $11 million.
Google took an uncharacteristically personal approach in announcing the donation drive on its blog. Rather than having an executive make the announcement, Rita Masoud, a Google employee who fled Kabul with her family when she was seven years old, wrote about her personal experience.
"Our journey involved many dark train and bus rides, as well as hunger, thirst, cold and fear," she wrote. "I was lucky. But as the refugee and migrant crisis in Europe has grown, many people like my family are desperate for help."
The donations will go toward four non-profit organizations that are providing aid to refugees and migrants: Doctors Without Borders, International Rescue Committee, Save the Children and UN High Commissioner for Refugees.
Europe is facing its worst refugee crisis since World War II, largely driven by the four-year-old civil war in Syria, which has displaced more than 4 million people this year. Many are also fleeing war-torn Afghanistan, Yemen, Iraq and Libya.