Syrian refugees receive plastic sheets at a distribution center in Jordan’s Zaatari refugee camp.

Questions about UNHCR

What is UNHCR?

Established in 1951, UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, protects people forced to flee conflict, disaster and persecution. UNHCR works in over 130 countries around the world – delivering life-saving assistance in emergencies, safeguarding fundamental human rights and helping find long-term solutions.

When an emergency strikes, UNHCR’s emergency response teams are often first on the ground. Dedicated staff cover every angle of emergency response, from coordinating airlifts to establishing camps. In protracted situations, UNHCR provides long-term support, helping displaced people access education, healthcare and livelihood opportunities. UNHCR also helps displaced people return home or resettle permanently in other countries.

For more information, visit UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency | UNHCR

What kinds of humanitarian emergencies does UNHCR respond to?

UNHCR is on the ground, saving lives and protecting people who have been forced to flee conflict, persecution or other humanitarian emergencies. Emergencies can include war, religious or political persecution, or natural disasters such as floods and earthquakes.

Whether people seek safety within their own country or across an international border, we stand ready to help in any crisis.

Which countries host the most refugees?

  1. Türkiye (3.6 million)
  2. Iran (3.4 million)
  3. Colombia (2.5 million)
  4. Germany (2.1 million)
  5. Pakistan (1.7 million)

Seventy per cent of refugees live in countries neighbouring their country of origin.

Source: Global Trends Report 2022

Where do most refugees come from?

According to the Global Trends Report 2022, 52 per cent of all refugees and other people in need of international protection come from just three countries: Syria (6.5 million), Ukraine (5.7 million) and Afghanistan (5.7 million).

Source: Global Trends Report 2022

Don't you get funding from the UN?

Only one per cent of UNHCR's budget comes from the United Nations. UNHCR relies almost entirely on voluntary contributions. Individual governments and the European Union provide 85 per cent of UNHCR’s budget. Another 11 per cent comes from individuals and the private sector, including foundations, corporations and the public. Even so, UNHCR typically receives only half the money it needs each year.

What emergencies can I donate to?

Read more about the current refugee emergencies UNHCR is actively assisting here.

When violence erupts and disaster strikes, UNHCR teams are ready to deploy humanitarian emergency assistance within 72 hours.

UNHCR is often first in and last out during humanitarian emergencies, providing life-saving assistance and care to the people who need it most.

Can I make a one-off donation rather than commit to a recurring donation?

You can make a one-off donation here.

Can my regular donation go towards a specific campaign?

We are currently only able to accept regular donations which support UNHCR's general emergency response work. This ensures UNHCR can send donations to where they're needed most.

Regular donations directly fund UNHCR’s operations on the ground during humanitarian crises and emergencies around the world, including the delivery of emergency shelters, protection, clean water, education opportunities, healthcare and livelihood projects.

Do you accept cash/cheque donations?

We currently only accept donations via credit card.

Is my donation tax deductible?

All donations over NZD$5.00 are tax deductible.Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR is a registered charity with the New Zealand Charities Register (registration CC59880).

Questions about Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR

What is the official name of the New Zealand entity?

Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR

What are the contact details for Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR?

Contact Details:

PO Box 302324 North Harbour Auckland 0751 NEW ZEALAND

Tel:+64 9414 7883

Email: [email protected]

Web: www.unrefugees.org.nz

Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR NZBN: 9429050294954

Bank Details: Not available. We are currently unable to accept direct deposits.

What is Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR?

Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR unites caring New Zealanders – individuals, community groups and businesses – to support people fleeing conflict, disaster and persecution. We advocate and fundraise for refugee protection, emergency aid, and long-term support and solutions, helping the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) reach millions of vulnerable people each year.

With an unprecedented 114 million people now displaced worldwide, our work is more urgent than ever.

For more information, visit About Us.

How can I obtain more information about Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR?

Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR is committed to being open and transparent about our work and accountable to our stakeholders. You can find a range of information on our website relating to our organisation and governance, the activities we support and the work of UNHCR. Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR also prepares audited financial reports which summarise our key activities and financial performance statement for each year.

Our Privacy Policy sets out the way we collect, hold, use and disclose your personal information and underpins our commitment to protecting your right to privacy. Our Complaints Policy sets out the process we use to ensure complaints are managed in an open and transparent manner. We will consider any reasonable requests for information.

To submit a query please send a written request to our Donor Care Team:

Email us: https://www.unrefugees.org.nz/contact-us/ or
Mail us: Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR at PO Box 302324, North Harbour, Auckland, 0751, NEW ZEALAND

Who can I contact for media enquiries?

Our media team (based in Australia) is available to handle any media enquiries, provide briefings on emergencies and disasters, and provide access to spokespeople, photography and footage.

Please direct any media enquiries to our press team: 

Lisa Upton, Head of Communication and Public Affairs: [email protected] 
Alexandra Fisher, Senior Media and Communications Manager: [email protected]

Why are you based in Australia and not New Zealand?

Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR operates alongside Australia for UNHCR from its head office in Sydney. This reduces administrative and operational costs, ensuring more funds go to the field, where they're needed most.

I would like to leave a gift in my Will for Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR. Can you send me some further information?

Yes, please contact our bequest team based in Australia at [email protected] to request more information on leaving a gift in your Will.

I would like to volunteer/work with Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR, do you have any vacancies?

Thank you for your interest in working with us. Unfortunately, we do not currently have any work or volunteer opportunities available.

I want to donate goods/clothes/books - where can I donate items in New Zealand?

Thank you for your generous offer. We are independent of and separate to UNHCR, and as such we do not have facilities to distribute goods within New Zealand or overseas.

Donor Enquiries

What percentage of my donation actually goes to the cause?

At least 76 per cent of all funds raised go directly to the field. We retain 18 per cent for fundraising expenses and 6 per cent for administration.

What happens to my donation when a program is fully funded?

If the funds raised exceed the amount required for a particular emergency, we will direct your donation to our emergency response program, which provides aid wherever the need is greatest.

I am a donor and have changed my address/contact details, what do I do?

You can change most of your details online by clicking here . To keep your details secure, you'll have to contact our Donor Care Team to change your credit card details. Please update your details on or before 31 March to help us ensure that you will receive your annual tax receipts on time.

I used to live in Australia but I have recently moved to New Zealand. Am I able to transfer my regular donation?

As Australia for UNHCR and Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR are separate organisations, you will need to cancel your Australian regular donation and set up a new regular donation with Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR. Please contact us here.

I used to live in Australia but I have recently moved to New Zealand. Can I start receiving mail to my address in New Zealand?

Yes. You can change most of your details online by clicking here.

I only want to receive communications by email. Is this possible?

Yes, please let us know by contacting us here.

How can I make changes to my donation?

You can change most of your details online by clicking here . To keep your details secure, you'll have to contact our Donor Care Team to change your credit card details.

How do I cancel my donation?

We understand that people have a lot of expenses, and we want to make it as easy as possible for you to support refugees in need. Before you cancel your donation, you may like to:

  • reduce your regular gift amount, or
  • put your donation on hold for a few months until things become easier for you.

Please contact our Donor Care Team and they'll help you choose the best option.

Can I reduce or increase my donation, or put it on hold?

Yes, you can. Please contact our Donor Care Team – they'll be able to help you increase or decrease your donation or put it on hold for up to three months.

How much notice do I need to give if I want to cancel my donation?

In order to ensure that your donation is cancelled in time, please contact our Donor Care Team at least one week before your next donation is due.

Can I make a donation over the phone?

Yes, you can. Please call our Donor Care Team on +64 9414 7883 and they'll process your donation for you.

What is your policy on refunds?

Please refer to our Refund Policy for information.

Annual Tax Receipts Enquiries

Is my donation tax deductible?

All donations over NZD$5.00 are tax deductible. Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR is a registered charity with the New Zealand Charities Register (registration CC59880).

When will I receive my annual tax receipt?

Annual tax receipts are issued in mid-April.

Your annual tax receipt is a consolidated receipt for your regular donations only. If you have made one-off donations during this financial year, these gifts were receipted at the time of the donation. If you require copies of your receipts for single gifts, please contact our Donor Care Team on +64 9414 7883, or via email at [email protected]

Where is my tax receipt?

If you donated online and haven't received a receipt in your inbox, please check your junk or spam folders – it may be sitting there. If not, please contact our Donor Care Team here and we'll be able to help you.

If you gave a one-off gift over the phone or by mail, you should receive a receipt by mail within a week. If you've signed up as a regular donor, you'll receive a receipt for all your regular gifts at the end of the financial year. This helps us keep admin costs down.

If you still need help, please contact our Donor Care Team.

It’s past 31 March and I haven't received my annual tax receipt. What should I do?

You can contact our Donor Care Team and request a receipt number and total amount given in the financial year.

Can I get my annual tax receipt early?

Yes, you can contact us and we can supply a summary of regular donations to date. However, please note it may not be complete as any remaining donations for the financial year may not have been processed. Your final annual tax receipt should be your formal record.

Why haven't you sent me receipts during the year?

For scheduled recurring donations, we send an annual tax receipt to reduce administrative costs and increase processing efficiencies.

I have made a donation to you this year, but it’s not on the annual tax receipt you sent me. Why not?

Annual tax receipts only include scheduled recurring donations. One-off donations are receipted as we receive your donations. If you believe your annual tax receipt does not contain all your scheduled recurring donations, please contact us.

Can I get my annual tax receipt emailed to me?

Your annual tax receipt will be emailed to you if we have a valid email address on record. If we do not have a valid email address, your tax receipt will be mailed to you. Please ensure that your contact details are up to date.

Asylum and Humanitarian Visa Enquiries

I am seeking refugee protection in New Zealand. Can you help me with legal protection matters?

Thank you for contacting Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR.

While we appreciate you looking to our office for help with this matter, this request falls beyond the scope and mandate of our organisation.

Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR is a non-profit organisation raising funds from the New Zealand public for UNHCR’s humanitarian and emergency programs overseas.

We are separate to and independent from UNHCR and as such we are unable to directly offer advice, guidance or assistance on asylum or resettlement matters.

Any enquiries to UNHCR should be sent to the UNHCR Multi-Country Office (MCO) in Canberra, Australia.

You can contact UNHCR’s MCO office by emailing [email protected] or calling +61 6281 9100.

More information is available at https://help.unhcr.org/newzealand/

I want to adopt/sponsor a child, or offer to host a refugee family.

Aotearoa New Zealand for UNHCR is solely a fundraising office. We are unable to provide advice on adopting, sponsoring or hosting refugees.