Press release: Techfugees launches funding campaign and new Portugal chapter at Web Summit



– New Portugal chapter headed by Inēs Silva –

8 November, 2016, Lisbon: Techfugees, the social enterprise coordinating the tech industry’s response to the refugee crisis, is excited to announce the launch of its crowd-funding campaign and the opening of the Techfugees Portugal chapter at a special evening event Web Summit 2016.

Techfugees Portugal, headed up by Inēs Silva from Global Shapers, Lisbon, will be part of an international network made of tech engineers, designers, social entrepreneurs, and NGOs all dedicated to working together, sharing learnings, to come up with tech solutions to help refugees from their first journey to their arrival and societal integration.

The former Prime Minister of Greece, George Papandreou, who addressed an evening event to launch the fund-raising campaign, said: “I whole-heartedly support the aims of Techfugees. It’s time for the technology world to engage with this issue, we need more activism like this. Refugees are are change agents a lot of them have changed their host communities for the better.”

Techfugees first phase of development was mainly focused on advocacy and education of the world of tech to the real needs of refugees. As the second phase now begins, a crowd-funding campaign is being launched to enable Techfugees to deliver full-blown deployment of tech innovation in the field to refugees and partner NGOs.


The raised funds will be used to deploy tech solutions specifically in Northern France, Greece and in Jordan during the first half of 2017, with the help of existing Techfugees partners on the ground. The first projects will help bring connectivity and education opportunities to refugees in camps and urban areas.

Joséphine Goube, CEO of Techfugees, comments: “There is no better time to launch Techfugees official crowdfunding and phase 2 of our activities than at Web Summit. Similarly to the way Web Summit has grown from 400 attendees to 50,000 in only six years, Techfugees has, in only one year, successfully sparked the interest of the international tech community across 27 countries and mobilised more than 15,000 worldwide to join the cause of deploying technology solutions to the refugee situations. We are only just starting to disrupt the humanitarian response by supporting more than 100 innovative projects on the ground, and looking at phase 2 to deploy and scale more. We are taking the opportunity to be on stage this week, for the tech industry to hear that the refugee challenge is not going away and that it will need significant donations from the sector and tech people to get involved, because tech scales.”

Mike Butcher founder and chairman of Techfugees, and Editor-At-Large of tech news site TechCrunch, adds: “It has been a year since Techfugees launched with a Facebook Group and a meet-up in London, bringing together the tech community, refugees and NGOs. We have quickly grown to a global community of over 15,000 people, sharing information on challenges of refugees and reports on pockets of innovation addressing these challenges.”

“We have grown organically across 27 countries around the world by running events and hackathons tailored for advocacy around the refugee crisis. Our local communities of volunteers have helped run over 35 conferences and hackathons. Our events have brought together more than 2,000 innovators, including 350+ refugees, to co-create solutions. Without these community events and the hard work of our local volunteers, many of these ideas would have never seen the light and never been tested today. Techfugees has successfully galvanised a global community — but we still have a long way to go in scaling this impact. Goodwill gets us so far, but we now need money to scale that impact! Please donate to enable us to deploy solutions to the field,” Butcher said.

To donate to the Techfugees cause, please go here:

**** Ends ****

Notes to Editors:

‘Refugee technology’ refers to web platforms, mobile apps and hardware, which either assists refugees directly or aids NGOs working with refugees.

About Techfugees
Techfugees is a social enterprise coordinating the international tech community’s response to the needs of refugees.

Techfugees curates refugee projects and accelerates the deployment and development of technology for refugees, in camp, on the move or in host communities. Disrupting the traditional humanitarian response, Techfugees works mainly with the business and tech sector in partnership with big NGOs and government institutions, to make refugees free and independent individuals again.

Moved by the plight of refugees in Europe, and led by Mike Butcher, the Editor-at-large of, Techfugees is formed by teams of volunteers in 25+ local chapters around the world creating series of non-profit “Techfugees” conferences, hackathons, and working with a global network of collaborators.

TechFugees HQ is supported by the following sponsors and partners:
Schibsted & IHorizon

For further information, please contact:

Joséphine Goube, CEO, Techfugees (pictured)
Mobile: +44 7580 428278

Mike Butcher, Chairman, Techfugees (pictured)
Mobile: +44 77202 91095

Joanna Ayre, PR lead

Event details and tickets link: