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WeReBuild: crowdfunding for refugees in work

Words by Smiley Team

A project enabling refugee and migrant trades people to join the local construction market as authorised professionals needs your help.

Mjed Kouri is the founder of WeReBuild – a nonprofit contracting community interest company (CIC). WeReBuild is a place where migrant and refugee tradespeople get the opportunity to practise their professions in a non-competitive, nurturing environment. 

As an architectural engineer from Syria, his passion for the work of tradespeople started when he used to accompany his family members to construction sites as a young teenager.

“Now, I'm starting a social enterprise that will help immigrant and refugee tradespeople to join the local construction market as authorised, acknowledged professionals,” he says.

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Why is it needed?

Despite the shortage of local labour in the construction industry, many refugee tradespeople either struggle to access work, or work in the unregulated grey market. “This means they are at risk, both of abusive labour practices, low wages and legal trouble,” says Mjed. “This limits their ability to make a name for themselves as tradespeople and thereby climb the professional and socioeconomic ladder.

“Some of the barriers that prevent this community from joining the private construction sector formally include language barriers, a lack of representation, and a lack of professional credentials.”

Mjed wants to kickstart his project to protect refugee tradespeople from working in the grey market, and protect their dignity as productive professionals.

Mjed is now looking for crowdfunding support to help him gain the needed tools, transportation means, and storage space to start supporting the 15 tradespeople they have already identified.

“If we manage to stretch our funding target, we will be able to afford necessary machinery to contract for carpentry jobs, and to upcycle wooden architectural fixtures,” he says.

Inspired to act?

You can support WeReBuild by:

DONATE: Support the campaign directly, on behalf of yourself and / or your company, association or organisation by donating to the crowdfunder

RAISE AWARENESS: Share the crowdfunding page with your networks, friends, and people who would be interested in supporting WeReBuild.

This article aligns with the following UN SDGs

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