The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, noting a backdrop of a weak global economy and multiple conflicts and crisis has caused mounting "compassion fatigue," has cast a net for PR and communications counsel to burnish its image and raise awareness and funding for its efforts.

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Refugee camp in Somalia, 2011. Photo: UNHCR

The UNHCR, which canceled a similar RFP earlier this year, has been partnering with global companies, digital partners and celebrities to boost its global fundraising and profile in recent years.

"The scale of our operation is huge and our staff often works heroically in some of the most challenging environments," reads the RFP. "Yet many people have never heard of us. …We are looking for agencies that can join us on the journey."

The UN entity's division of external relations has released an RFP to hear from firms to support its Communications and Public Information Service, or CPIS.

CPIS is divided into strategic communications (PR and branding), and news/content, which handles media relations.

Key annual events for the UNHC include World Refugee Day on June 20 and its Nansen Refugee Award, held in Geneva. The entity said it plans a media campaign with both news and PR components at least once per year.

The UNHC wants framework contracts with a number of agencies for PR, brand development and fundraising, among related services, on an as-needed basis.

Proposals are due by May 13.

View the RFP (link, PDF)