Collective Impact | Middle East

The No Lost Generation Tech Task Force connects experts in humanitarian response with private sector expertise and resources to address the needs of conflict-affected children and youth.

collective impact70+ organizations

4 cross-sector projectscollective impact driven

a repository of resourcescollective information exchanges


The Problem

Please visit our Resources page for webinars, reports, information about cross-sector projects, and much more.

We are in the midst of the worst refugee crisis since World War II. Over
68 million people around the world have been forced from their homes. Among them are 25.4 million refugees, over half of whom are children. After safety, shelter, food, and internet connectivity (to send and receive information), education is one of the highest priorities in refugee communities. Yet, refugee children and youth are five times more likely to be out of school than non-refugee children.

Reaching conflict-affected children and youth with the support they need is complex and long-term work. It requires a collaborative, evidence-based, cross-sector approach and innovative solutions that deliver at-scale, long-term impact. The private sector brings a unique combination of expertise and resources critical for meeting the urgent and ongoing needs of children and youth affected by the refugee crisis.

The Solution

At the March 2017 No Lost Generation Tech Summit, No Lost Generation and NetHope came together, with support from Microsoft, to establish the No Lost Generation (NLG) Tech Task Force to facilitate collaboration between the humanitarian sector and the private sector, with the focus on ICT-enabled, evidence-based programs for children and youth.

The Task Force brings humanitarian and development experts together with the private sector to identify the highest impact opportunities to address education, livelihoods, participation, and protection needs of displaced children and youth.

The NLG Tech Task Force focuses on:

  • Establishing collaborative information exchanges around refugee and internally displaced persons' education, livelihoods, participation, and protection
  • Facilitating cross-sector, tech-enabled projects to address the needs of displaced children and youth
  • Synthesizing group insights into learnings & recommendations with the focus on the role that technology and private sectors can play in enabling scale and increasing quality

The NLG Tech Task Force is open to all global and local NGOs, private sector companies, academic institutions, entrepreneurs, and host governments.


The first phase of engagement is underway. We are building a cross-sector community through the exchange of information around existing programs and tech solutions, sharing past and current efforts, and initiating new collaborations to achieve greater reach and impact.

  • Cross-sector information sharing: Since March 2017, the Tech Task Force has grown to 70+ members, including UNICEF, Mercy Corps, World Vision, Save the Children, International Rescue Committee, Microsoft, TripAdvisor, Adobe, Cisco, and many others. The Tech Task Force hosted 17 virtual collaborative sessions with tech-enabled programs by Microsoft, Coursera, Udemy, HP, Accenture, Adobe, UNICEF, IRC, NRC, War Child, IIE, World Vision, Mercy Corps, Arizona State University, INEE, UNESCO, SOS Children's Villages and Kiva. Recordings and resources are available publicly.
  • Private sector engagement: A private sector symposium of 50+ representatives from private and humanitarian sectors included Microsoft, Adobe, Salesforce, Pearson, Accenture, Pluralsight, HP, Box, Cisco, UNICEF, IRC, World Vision, and Mercy Corps. Following the Symposium, the Tech Task Force formulated a set of cross-sector projects that are currently incubating. The four current projects include: a learning companion chatbot which enables youth to quickly discovery and access academic and skills-training resources; remote mentoring, helping displaced youth learn conversational English; training for in-demand skills;  and the Adobe Project 1324 Challenge, which proactively supports conflict-affected young people across the Middle East and the globe to share their stories and connect through creative self-expression. Project collaborators include Microsoft, Salesforce, Adobe, Pluralsight, UNICEF, NRC, Mercy Corps, and conflict-affected youth. We encourage you to review this post.
  • Synthesis and advocacy: A repository of resources. A variety of resources are available here including two newsletters, sharing information at key events such as SxSW EDU, the NetHope Global Summit, and the ICT4D Conference, with updates and new initiatives being added all the time in this growing topic.

Katy Barnett, No Lost Generation Advisor at UNICEF, meets with tech partners from the private sector.

In the private sector, there are a number of resources and expertise that can be activated to help develop solutions that meet the unique needs of millions of displaced youth. And, many employees are eager to contribute their time and energy to have a positive impact.

Ross Smith from Microsoft, working with Norwegian Refugee Council on Chatbot project