Somali YouTuber AboFlah raises $ 1 million for refugees

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KUWAIT – A Somali YouTuber based in Kuwait has raised $ 1 million in just over a day to help refugees and displaced persons in Syria, Lebanon, Iraq and Jordan.

With almost 21 million followers, AboFlah, whose real name is Hassan Suleiman, is one of the most famous influencers in the Arab world. He launched his website, dedicated to reviewing video games, in 2016.

His campaign, launched in coordination with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), this week raised $ 1 million in 28 hours.

“This is thanks to my followers … thanks with all my heart,” AboFlah, 23, said in an interview with AFP on Wednesday.

He said the donations exceeded his expectations.

The vlogger launched the campaign, called “Warm Their Hearts”, during a livestream where he marked reaching 20 million followers.

Millions of people have been displaced by conflicts around the region, including in Syria and Iraq.

Many Syrian refugees now live in camps in Jordan and Lebanon, which also receive a large number of Palestinian refugees.

The funds raised by AboFlah are expected to provide food, clothing and fuel to more than 17,000 people as winter approaches.

Nasreen Rabiean, UNHCR Representative in Kuwait, praised the initiative and “the spirit of shared responsibility and solidarity”.

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