As a company in the business of creating consumer devices that both delight and inspire, HP believes that technology can enrich lives – and help rebuild them as well.
And as a global company that does business in more than 170 countries and territories, HP has a unique opportunity to put that belief into action with aid to the some 5 million people who’ve fled their homes and country to escape civil conflict in Syria.
Facing a global refugee crisis of a scale unprecendented since World War II, President Barack Obama earlier this year urged the private sector to ”contribute more funding for humanitarian aid operations, to grant more refugees the chance to work and attend school, and to provide more resettlement opportunities.”
HP answered the call in June and is stepping up again, which is why the company announced today it’s expanding its commitment to refugees by opening new Learning Studios in Jordan and Lebanon.
In addition, HP is providing computing and printing technology and HP LIFE e-learning to two Lynke and Blue Rose Compass tech centers in Jordan and an International Medical Corps Livelihood Center program in Turkey.
HP executives and industry leaders are set to convene with President Obama during his Leaders Summit on Refugees at the United Nations General Assembly in New York, where they’ll continue to work with the administration to drive new, measurable and significant commitments that will have a durable impact on refugees.
"How difficult and frightening it must be for people to have to flee the countries they've known their entire lives and start over as strangers in a foreign land," said Nate Hurst, chief sustainability and social impact officer at HP. "Our hope is that by working with industry partners, we can apply technology in some effective ways to ease the burden of families trying to find and build a better life."
Technology can certainly be a key enabler for that, helping refugees and families displaced in their own countries with ready access to new ways of learning.
HP is working closely with the likes of Digital Promise Global, the Global Business Coalition for Education, Microsoft and Intel to establish the new Learning Studios, which will tap a variety of hardware, software and teacher training services to prepare refugees for potential careers in technology. They include the all-in-one HP Sprout computers, and x360 convertible PCs powered by Windows 10 and Office 365 along with a Dremel 3D Printer.
The Learning Studios have already been deployed in sixty locations across ten countries, but these are the first installed to specifically focus on helping refugee youth and adults acquire knowledge and skills.
The core curriculum will be supplemented by HP LIFE , a program of the HP Foundation, which includes 25 free, online learning courses covering essential business and IT skills available in seven languages. As part of this effort, HP will support the creation of additional free online courses and curated content specifically designed to help refugees develop the skills and expertise necessary for freelancing and ecommerce.
In June, HP was one of the first 15 companies to respond to the White House Call to Action on the Syrian refugee crisis.
At the time, the company announced a partnership with the Global Alliance Institute and Girl Scouts of Nation’s Capital to support the Girls Truth Seekers Education Project, which aims to connect Girl Scouts in the Washington, D.C., area with young Syrian refugee girls living in countries bordering their homeland.
“Millions of Syrians have the same hopes and dreams as anyone else only to have them torn away by a political situation beyond their control,” Hurst said. “By joining with the White House and other organizations and companies to tackle this crisis, HP is working hard to provide access to quality education and offer a path to employment and prosperity.”