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Intergenerational Mentoring

The association DUO for a JOB connects immigrant youth who are actively looking for work with Belgians over fifty who support them in their efforts. Through this intergenerational mentorship (coaching) it’s DUO for a JOB’s ambition to give everyone equal opportunities in their access to employment. Since 2013 already 150 volunteer mentors subscribed to the program and 163 duos have been realized. Thirty percent of our mentees are refugees.

After a training of four days, the mentor accompanies a person of non-European origin between 18 and 30 years old (the mentee) for a few hours a week for six months , in his job search.

It is first and foremost an interpersonal experience and source of mutual enrichment. The adolescent benefits from the professional experience and the support of his mentor, practices the local language and expands his network. In turn, the mentor engages in a social commitment, remains active by sharing his experience, sharpens his social skills and obtains a new social network.

This mentorship also allows for the creation of intergenerational and intercultural relations, strengthening social cohesion and enhancing the experience of our middle aged and elderly.

A professional team guides the duos, offering them a personalized follow-up during the entire mentorship process. DUO for a JOB also organizes training sessions and regular meetings between mentors in which exchanging experiences is central.

Region: Europe
Country: Belgium
Organization: Other
Sector: Xenophobia/Discrimination / Profiling / Livelihoods / Education / Durable Solutions / Community Integration

      duo_for_a_job_en_presentation.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 853 KB

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Urban Refugee Assessment Tool Box

UNHCR operations in Sudan have traditionally been camp based because 
although the Government of Sudan is a signatory to the 1951 Convention, it
maintains a reservation regarding freedom of movement. In addition, urban
refugees in Khartoum have long been de-prioritized despite their obvious
existence in the city. Funding constraints and the absence of reliable
demographic data to use for a baseline contributed to the lack of engagement.
However, in 2013 an opening arose to programme for refugees in Khartoum
and the decision to work together with the Government of Sudan’s Committee
on Refugees (COR) on a mapping or integrated population assessment in
order to understand the gaps and coping mechanisms and needs of the
refugee and asylum seeking populations in the city. By better understanding
the profile and assets of this community, UNHCR Sudan hoped to have a
“robust foundation for urban decision making and programming,
identify priorities and responses, and develop the multi-year Urban
Refugee Strategy.”
 
UNHCR Khartoum’s “Urban Refugee Population Assessment” is a household
survey that is a “multi-sector, mixed-method assessment (integrating different
qualitative and quantitative assessment components) across all the main
sectors such as legal and physical protection, livelihoods, education, health,
etc.” It was designed to tie to the Results Based Framework. The assessment
tool was complemented by focus group discussions. It was accompanied by
service mapping as well as capacity assessments of these service providers,
geo-mapping of densely populated areas and a labor market assessment.
The process took approximately one year to complete including the time for
preparations, assessments and reporting writing. Delays due to permissions
occurred. The gaps left by local assessment teams and the inability to afford
modern survey tools such as tablets (iPads) that link directly to a central
database were other challenges. Nevertheless, ownership for the results was
enhanced through this process heavy exercise. It should be noted that more
than 1,000 refugees participated in the quantitative and qualitative parts,
proportionally across countries of origin, gender and age. Another key
component of the assessment exercise is the “knowledge transfer” including
the “report back” to the community assessed, visualization of data in the form
of infographics, and multi-stakeholder workshops.
 
The document attached is an Assessment Tool Box developed by the 
UNHCR Office in Khartoum.

Region: Africa
Country: Sudan
Organization: UN agency
Sector: Community Outreach / Protection / Profiling / Documentation

      urban_refugee_assessment_final_draft_tool_box_cq_22022015_2.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 1.27 MB

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Innovative Microlending through Kiva Zip and RefugePoint

As of October 2014, some 583,000 refugees and asylum-seekers reside in Kenya. Many refugees in Nairobi as well as Kakuma and Dadaab camps run successful small businesses that meet their basic needs. A lot of them, however, are unable to accumulate sufficient capital to grow their businesses and become more successful entrepreneurs. In cooperation with UNHCR and implementing partner RefugePoint, Kiva Zip, a pilot programme of microfinance lending programme Kiva.org, is helping to facilitate loans to refugees in Nairobi.

RefugePoint, a U.S. based organisation that works with the most vulnerable refugees in several African countries, acts as a trustee by selects refugees to participate in microfinance activities with KivaZip and essentially guaranteeing the loans for lendees with their public reputation. All recipients prior to receiving a loan, first receive a cash grant to help smooth consumption as well as close scrutiny of their proposed business plan. Kiva Zip advertises the refugee profile on the web and charitable persons from around the globe commit a small no-interest loan (upwards from $5) towards the overall loan. Kiva Zip offers loans without interest and fees. The entire lending procedure takes place online and payments to the borrowers are made via the mobile money provider M-PESA. Refugees do not need a bank account or internet access, all communication and money transfers are made to their mobile phones.

The repayment rate of refugees is currently at 90 per cent and the impact of Kiva Zip loans has been very high. A tripling of average monthly income of beneficiaries from 4000 to 12 500 KSh (equivalent of $40 to $130). Also, in comparison to other beneficiaries, loans for refugees have been funded at a faster rate, the average being loans fully funded within 24 hours, and a record of 5 minutes.

For more information please see the attached information sheet.

Region: Africa
Country: Kenya
Organization: UN agency
Sector: Protection / Material Needs / Livelihoods

      kiva_zip_case_3.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 427 KB

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Employment Assistance and On-the-Job Training

The New Employment Program, established in 2011 by the Japanese Association for Refugees (JAR), supports refugees in accessing employment opportunities by providing job counseling and placement, escorting, on-the-job training, culture and language orientation, and other assistance through an integrated outreach and orientation program focused on both refugees and employers. Needs and expectations are assessed and matched. Moreover, refugees must apply for jobs – they are not simply given to them. The program and process is continually repeating for refugees, providing the following:

Employment preparation course (short-term and centralized) + Japanese classes (on a case-by-case with materials designed specifically for the work place) → Tour of the Partner Companies (who have all agreed to on-the-job training for those selected)

At the same time, the program calls on companies to encourage the employment of refugees, and also provides orientation for them which includes the provision of education services for employers (including on client sensitivities and ethics) and the planning of company tours as well as on-the-job training (OJT) for new refugee employees. The process for employers also repeats as follows:

Education on hiring refugees → Company Tour → OJT → Matching

The cooperation between JAR and its partner company, Sakae Co., Ltd, which is currently hiring refugees and sending its Director as a trainer, makes the training practical and encourages the participation and long-term commitment of both companies and refugee employees. This program helps to mitigate the challenges that refugees face in understanding the Japanese language, Japanese work culture, and the labor market, as well as the gap between their expectations and the realities they face. Likewise, the program addressed employers’ need workers and their fear of hiring refugees due to the challenges they anticipated in their fitting in smoothly, or lacking basic knowledge, understanding, or reliability. Employers who were once hesitant are not our biggest advocates. As a result, there is also lateral outreach taking place between employers, so the number of employers engaged is growing.

Note: The program was first run as a pilot. It was then adapted based on lessons learned with 11 refugees. The donor re-funded despite some initial struggles, and now a program is established based on the lessons learned. The new goal is to assist 100 refugees and connect with 100 employers. To avoid high expenditure on transportation fees, JAR offers programs in nearby regions and communities so that refugees have better accessibility.

Region: Asia and the Pacific
Country: Japan
Organizations: NGO/International Organization / Japan Association for Refugees (JAR)
Sector: Livelihoods / Community Outreach / Community Integration

      employment_assistance_program.ppt      Doc: Powerpoint      Size: 163 KB

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Social Protection Fund (SPF)

In 2009, UNHCR Malaysia’s relationship with asylum seekers and the refugee population were strained due to a lack of resources in processing their cases. The Office had a very limited assistance program, and there were only handful of implementing partners helping refugees. As such, UNHCR Malaysia created the Social Protection Fund (SPF) programme as an innovative approach to facilitate individuals’ protection and livelihood skills strengthening towards achieving self-reliance. Through the SPF programme, UNHCR provides grants of up to 4,000 USD to community-based refugee groups for implementing projects that facilitate self-reliance. These projects include income-generation, skills training (computer, tailoring, handicraft, English, etc.), community services, and community development (day care centres, recreation activities, and peaceful coexistence programmes). SPF projects are participatory in nature with refugees being directly involved in the planning and implementation of activities that affect their lives. In this way SPF projects build on refugees’ skills, knowledge, and opportunities, and address threats to their livelihoods. 

With three staff members contributing to all stages of the selection and implementation process, SPF has implemented roughly 80 projects each year since 2009, with a total of 463 community projects approved. The grants have supported more than 50 community based organizations (CBO) and 40 self-help groups and have reached out to 16 ethnic groups in 10 Malaysian states. The cumulative number of direct beneficiaries from these projects is estimated at 27,000, with more than 50,000 indirect beneficiaries, of all age groups and genders.

In 2014, a pilot project was implemented to provide women with business grants of up to 1,000 USD. The grant requires CBOs and self-help groups to develop project proposals in association with SPF personnel. A Steering Committee within UNHCR Malaysia reviews all project applications including those seeking additional funding for existing projects. The programme's implementation can be divided into 3 stages:

  1. Pre-project applications - outreach, training, and coaching,
  2. Presentation of project proposals to Steering Committee and signing Letter of Agreement and disbursement of grants (in instalments),
  3. Post-applications - monitoring, interventions, and internal evaluations.

In total, ten business grants were awarded to support businesses oriented towards homemade frozen food, catering services, painting, and handicrafts. Most of the grant money was oriented towards the purchase of productive assets such as freezers, ovens, grinders, and blenders, as well as marketing materials. The women not only initiated income generating activities, but also achieved a sense of fulfilment, empowerment, and aspiration. It took roughly six to nine months for the women’s business to become self-sustaining thus allowing them to achieve a greater degree of financial stability for themselves and their families. With eight of ten projects continuing to run sustainably into 2015, the pilot project has been mainstreamed into a micro-enterprise grant programme with targets to increase the number of grant recipients to 20 for the year.

Region: Asia and the Pacific
Country: Malaysia
Organization: UN agency
Sector: Protection / Women / Material Needs / Livelihoods / Community Integration

      spf_impact_assessment_report.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 243 KB

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Urban Refugee Information Booklet

UNHCR Nepal developed the first Urban Refugee Booklet at the end of 2009. The booklet has been used as guidance for UNHCR staff members who conduct information counselling sessions, so that they pass consistent information on to all the newly recognised refugees. At the same time, the booklet provides information to refugees about the role of UNHCR, the services available for them, the implication of the Government’s Immigration Policy and their responsibility to give truthful information. 

Since 2009, the Urban Refugee Booklet has been revised three times, as per changes in available services and partnership arrangements. Although the booklet is currently published only in English, UNHCR Nepal is exploring possibilities for translations.  Apart from this booklet, UNHCR Nepal has also developed another booklet for asylum seekers in 2009, which provides information about registration, the RSD process and other pertinent information.  

Region: Asia and the Pacific
Country: Nepal
Organization: UN agency
Sector: Protection / Registration

      booklet_urban_refugee_revised_in_july_2014.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 152 KB

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REMEDI - Refugee Medical Insurance

UNHCR’s Kuala Lumpur office initiated a Health Insurance Scheme in July 2014 to facilitate access to the national health systems for second line treatment. The scheme provides coverage for individuals and families at a premium rate of 38-43 USD per annum, with a ceiling coverage of 3,125-3,750 USD depending on the package purchased. The scheme was initiated to overcome refugees’ financial barriers to accessing second line treatment, which is a huge challenge in Malaysia where the protection environment is limited and where refugees do not have access to legal employment opportunities. This scheme has helped to increase the protection space and has allowed refugees to better manage the risk of being pushed into a state of deprivation at the household level in the event of a health issue.

Region: Asia and the Pacific
Country: Malaysia
Organization: UN agency
Sector: Protection / Health / Advocacy

      unhcr_malaysia_remedi_faq_sheet_eng.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 233 KB
      unhcr_malayisa_remedi_brochure_latest.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 623 KB

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Online Communication Tool

In an urban refugee context such as that of the People's Republic of China, where persons of concern (POC) are scattered in various provinces across the vast country, communication is key since UNHCR has a limited presence and no implementing partners on the ground. The establishment of an email communication channel works well in China where most, if not all, POC have access to the internet.

To reach POC living in hard to reach urban areas, a dedicated UNHCR email address was created and is shared with potential POC from the Day 1, when they first approach the office. The email address is also included in the information pamphlet provided in various languages and available on the UNHCR China website. As it is not feasible - nor economical - for POC in China to travel often to the UNHCR office in Beijing since most live some 1,500-2,000 kilometers from the capital, the email communication tool has proven to be extremely useful and convenient and has allowed POC to stay in touch for various reasons. It also provides a 'paper-less trail’ of events in writing. The emails are filed in individual e-folders for each POC. Issues which are sensitive in nature require and result in a separate follow-up but the email communication tool facilitates initial contact and information sharing (keeping UNHCR's Confidentiality Guidelines in mind).

The email communication tool can be used in operations with smaller caseloads where the profile of POC also allows for such technologies to be used. A downside is that some of emails received are sometimes in the POC's native language and need to be subsequently translated. One dedicated staff member monitors the inbox where emails are received. Upon receipt, they are color-coded according to the content of the email, whereby another responsible staff member in the office can later refer to the email and take action accordingly (for Programme, Protection or simply to update a POC's address or telephone, etc.).

Region: Asia and the Pacific
Country: Republic of China
Organization: UN agency
Sector: Protection / SGBV / Registration / Refugee Status Determination / Material Needs / Health / Durable Solutions / Documentation / Community Outreach

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Coloring Book to Promote Children's Safety and SGBV Awareness

The Children's Safety Program (CSP) is an important component of ICMC's work to reduce, prevent and address SGBV. Through the CSP, Burmese refugee children receive SGBV awarenss training in schools and primary learning centres. ICMC develops a range of creative means to reinforce the key messages of the CSP, such as this coloring book on appropriate touching which is translated into Burmese and distributed to children upon completion of their training. 

Region: Asia and the Pacific
Country: Malaysia
Organization: International Catholic Migration Commission
Sector: SGBV / Education / Child Protection

      img_141219142955.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 1.88 MB

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Helping Refugees Rebuild Their Lives With Microcredit and Seed Capital

Since 2002, UNHCR has been using micro-credit schemes to promote refugee integration in Costa Rica. 877 persons have received a total of 1,523 micro-credit loans and since the start of the programme, the initial capital has been reused 3.5 times. More recently, in partnership with the Panamanian Red Cross and Microserfin, UNHCR gave Colombian refugee Cristóbal López Isaza what he needed to buy a van so he could begin doing business with the most prestigious tour operators in Panama City, at a very low interest rate. Later, Cristóbal went on to found his own tour operator, “Vive Panamá”.

When Cristóbal first arrived in Panama City, he began selling lasagna prepared by his wife, Stela Sánchez Aldana, in local internet cafés. One day Stela saw an advertisement looking for people who spoke English and French, and since she did she soon became a freelance guide for bus tours. At the same time, Cristóbal did occasional car maintenance work, being a former salesman of vehicles. One day a client from the U.S. gave him his old limousine, and so Cristóbal began providing a limousine service with a driver-guide – a business model he developed himself.

Cristóbal’s experience with micro-credit was a positive one because he met two important criteria: he had (1) a sound business plan and (2) the means to meet his basic needs and that of his family. To those who do not meet these criteria, UNHCR provides seed capital to help them get back on their feet. When they are unable to meet their basic needs, refugees cannot be expected to pay back the credit loans they receive.

Alberto Jiménez* and his wife Marta Molero* were granted enough seed capital (a grant for the amount needed to start up a business) so that they could purchase a grill. Soon they were able to increase their street food business’s profits to secure a humble dwelling complete with a bed and fridge, after having initially lived on the floor. UNHCR and its partners decide when to give out micro-credit loans or seed capital on a case-by-case basis, keeping the refugees’ best interests at heart.

*Names changed for protection reasons

Region: Americas
Country: Panama
Organization: UN agency
Sector: Livelihoods

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Awareness Through Art: Burmese refugee youth raise awareness about gender-based violence (2nd Runner Up)

Kuala Lumpur and its surrounding areas are home to almost 100,000 urban, mostly Burmese, refugees. Cultural attitudes and behaviors about gender roles and violence and the stresses of statelessness, poverty, and uncertainty about the future contribute to an environment in which refugee women and children are at high-risk for gender-based violence. ICMC, in collaboration with its mini-grant Kachin Refugee Learning Centre, launched an Awareness Through Art contest to engage Burmese refugee youth in increasing awareness of gender-based violence in their communities by creating artwork illustrating the themes of “Say no to violence” and “Respect”. Almost 100 youth ages 13-17 participated, and the top three youth artists' artwork were featured in postcards aimed to promote changes in attitudes and behavior with the goal of preventing gender-based violence.​

Below are the postcards that were awarded 2nd and 1st Runner Up and the 1st Prize in the contest.

Region: Asia and the Pacific
Country: Malaysia
Organization: International Catholic Migration Commission
Sector: SGBV

      2nd_runner_up.jpg      Doc: Image      Size: 163 KB
      1st_prize.jpg      Doc: Image      Size: 733 KB
      1st_runner_up_2.jpg      Doc: Image      Size: 158 KB

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BASRAN - Bangkok Asylum Seeker and Refugee Assistance Network

BASRAN is a network for all those working to help urban refugees in Bangkok - UNHCR and partners, NGOs, faith based communities, international schools and individuals. An active concern for refugees is what has brought us all together. 

What binds us together is our commitment to helping the refugee population plus the reality we all face - huge unprecedented needs with access to limited resources  What results is a great amount of creativity and willingness to undertake shared initiatives to help in more constructive ways. 

BASRAN’s initiatives focus on livelihoods, education and health. In each area, there is active support and efforts undertaken to coordinate and build up better outcomes. Refugees are equal partners in these efforts. 

Within BASRAN, we share information and ideas but we also share a passion for helping refugees. We connect at the grassroots level and give life to each other in what can be very challenging work.

Our Terms of Reference can serve as a guide for those who wish to start a network like BASRAN in their city. Agreeing upon Terms of Reference ensures that every member of the network knows what the network is and stands for, as well as how it works and what is expected of its members. 

Region: Asia and the Pacific
Country: Thailand
Organization: Interagency
Sector:

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Supporting Survivors of Violence in Ecuador and Venezuela

In response to the high number of Colombian women displaced due to sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) suffered at the hands of their partners, UNHCR is working closely with state and local institutions as well as NGOs in Ecuador and Venezuela to help survivors of violence and their families heal and thrive in their host communities.

In Ecuador, UNHCR is providing these women with shelter, in collaboration with the Women’s Federation in Sucumbíos, in the East, and free counselling at university legal clinics in the border town of Tulcán, in Esmeraldas (Pacific Coast), and Ibarra (in the North). In addition, UNHCR is including these women in micro-credit schemes to help them build sustainable livelihoods.

Survivors in Venezuela can participate in vocational training to gain or strengthen skills in computer literacy, sewing or cooking. By becoming self-sufficient, women survivors can avoid being trapped in violent relationships. UNHCR also provides women survivors with specialized sexual and reproductive health support to treat medical conditions brought on by sexual violence, including HIV infections and other sexually transmitted diseases.

Region:
Countries: Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of / Ecuador
Organizations: UN agency / NGO/International Organization
Sector: Protection / Women / SGBV / Mental Health/Psychosocial / Community Integration

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Vocational Training in Kabul’s Informal Settlements

Solidarités International is one of the few NGOs in Kabul providing vocational training to low-skilled workers. Their vocational training programme acts as an informal apprenticeship, rather than a center-based training. Trainees are placed in enterprises for a period of 6 months, and receive a monthly food package in return. The training covers metalworking, carpentry, tailoring, auto-mechanics and motorbike mechanics. A separate tailoring training programme for women takes place in training centers in each targeted informal settlement.  An evaluation of this programme conducted by Samuel Hall Consultancy produced the following recommendations for future vocational training in this location:

Trainees should be first trained in training centres to learn the theoretical and basic practical skills of the trade, and can then be placed in enterprises to both improve their practical skills and to acquire knowledge of the market. Once trainees are trained for a certain period of time – for example 6 months, but this depends on the type of profession – and learn the necessary theoretical knowledge and basic practical work, they can be placed in enterprises for a shorter period of time where they work as “nearly skilled workers”. This way, they can contribute more effectively in the production process in the enterprise, acquire knowledge of the market, and develop their communication and negotiation skills.

- Vocational training on technical skills almost always requires the trainees to possess basic  skills, such as literacy and numeracy, communication and  negotiation. Therefore, it is imperative that trainees who are illiterate are provided with literacy and numeracy courses, and that opportunities to develop communication and negotiation skills are given during the initial training course.

Training on integration into the labour market and on business development should also be delivered in order to increase employability in the post-training phase. Trainees need to know how to look for employment in Kabul in order to favour their rapid integration in the labour market. Training on business establishment, development and planning is also equally important to help those trainees who would like to launch a business of their own.

Men should be included in the final training stages for women. Some trades for women require active support of men at the household and community level. Poultry, tailoring, carpet weaving and leather product manufacturing require men to purchase material for women, to market their products or find clients, and to sell their products in the bazaar. Therefore, men – either one male member per household or a number of men at the community level – should be trained in relevant support activities. Only by doing so, women could be encouraged to work domestically and receive income from their activity.

 

Region: Asia and the Pacific
Country: Afghanistan
Organization:
Sector: Livelihoods

      sustaining_the_working_poor_in_the_kabul_informal_settlements_2.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 2.79 MB

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Housing solution to support urban refugees and host communities in Jordan

Of the 600,000 Syrian refugees in Jordan, over two thirds live in urban environments.  As rent prices have increased because of the population surge, many agencies have adopted cash-for-rent programmes to provide refugees with money to afford accommodation. However, this approach negatively impacts on the overall housing market. NRC has developed an innovative solution to this problem.

Traditionally, Jordanians live in partially completed multistory buildings. They invest in the construction of the upper storeys over a long period of time, as money becomes available, finishing construction ahead of the marriage of a male family member. Women usually move out of their birthplace upon marriage, joining their husbands and families in their own houses. The NRC has been providing Jordanians in Irbid with financial aid to finish their properties, bringing them up to basic standard to provide homes for refugee families. With access to financial capital, Jordanian landlords are able to complete something that would otherwise not have been finished in the short term. In return, they host a refugee family rent free, as the rent is paid in advance with the money provided for completion. The project also serves as an economic stimulator to the area affected by the Syrian influx, providing employment to local workers to complete the house.

The investment made in the completion of the construction is roughly equivalent to 12-18 months of rent payments. Available funding depends on the size and situation of the property, spanning from JD1000 for a one bedroom apartment to JD5600 for a four bedroom unit. Each bedroom can accommodate up to 5 people (so a four bedroom unit can host 20 refugees). The landlord can choose the length of period to rent to refugees, typically from one to one and a half years. The longer the period, the more funding is granted. Before refugee families move in, they meet with their Jordanian landlords at least once. So far, over 1500 units have been completed so far in Irbid, providing homes for 8200 refugees.

Region: Middle East and North Africa
Country: Jordan
Organization: Norwegian Refugee Council
Sector: Shelter

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Training for recipients of mobile cash transfers

An evaluation of Welthungerhilfe (WHH) and the Danish Refugee Council (DRC) winter cash interventions in the Kabul Informal Settlements recommends increased training of persons of concern in the use of mobile cash transfers:

  • Persons of concern should be offered training in the use and benefits of mobile cash transfers.
  • Training should be developed for groups with different needs. This includes tailored training sessions for women, youth, the elderly and illiterate beneficiaries.
  • Female headed households are often the most vulnerable due to lower incomes and lower literacy rates). As such, it is necessary to take into account the safety of accessing the market, local financial institution or mobile cash distributor. Mobile cash can also increase their risk of exploitation. Extra support and training should therefore be developed on the risks of mobile cash for women.
  • Training should use practical exercises to explain the uses of this technology, and refresher courses should be offered.

Region: Asia and the Pacific
Country: Afghanistan
Organization: Danish Refugee Council
Sector: Livelihoods

      cash_based_assistance_programmes_for_idps_in_the_kabul_informal_settlements_2.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 1.40 MB

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Recommendations for urban policing strategies in India, Pakistan and Nepal

A policy briefing from the Institute of Development Studies researched police responses to urban insecurity in South Asia. The following recommendations are made for urban policing strategies in India, Pakistan and Nepal:

  • Further staff training is needed in police forces in each of these locations to adapt to changing contexts of urban insecurity.
  • Recruitment of police staff should be more gender balanced across all ranks. While physical fitness is a core requirement, this should not be the only criteria for selection. A well trained, highly competent constabulary can contribute significantly to establishing long lasting community relations.
  • Urban security provision can no longer be reactionary in its application of force. Evidence suggests successful strategies employ long-term outlooks to build the credibility and legitimacy of the police. These involve community-police collaborations, and prioritise neighbourhood level safety issues.

Region: Asia and the Pacific
Countries: Nepal / India / Pakistan
Organization:
Sector: Security

      policing_urban_violence_2.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 185 KB

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Community run home visits to promote maternal mental health in Cape Town

The Philani Maternal, Child Health and Nutrition Project operates  in the informal settlements on the outskirts of Cape Town as an intervention to prevent malnutrition, rehabilitate underweight children and promote good maternal mental health. A core component of this programme is the idea that communities are best placed to solve their own problems, and that community participation in health care decisions is essential.

During a 4–6 week assessment and training period, mentor mothers are trained in skills relating to HIV/AIDS, maternal mental health, nutrition, basic health, early stimulation and play, knowledge about community resources and services, and referral mechanisms. Following training, successful applicants are employed and conduct approximately six home visits per day, building supportive and trusting relationships and discussing family and parenting-related issues during each 15–60-minute visit. Ongoing supervision and input from coordinators and local clinic nursing staff ensures the programme’s success.

Region: Africa
Country: South Africa
Organization: Other
Sector: Mental Health/Psychosocial

      maternal_mental_health_in_the_context_of_community_based_home_visiting.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 260 KB

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Psychological first aid with refugee school children in Cairo

It is well documented that refugee children can benefit from attending school to re-establish a routine and a sense of normalcy, make new friends, and integrate into the host community. Yet refugee school children also face significant challenges in this environment that can hinder learning. In Cairo, AMERA (Africa and Middle East Refugee Assistance) designed a workshop to explore issues and find solutions with teachers and their refugee students.

 Issues raised by refugee students using a participatory approach during the workshops included limited access to clean water to wash before or after school; difficulties facing students with learning disabilities in overcrowded educational settings; access to educational facilities for students with physical disabilities; limited social opportunities outside of school; discriminatory and sexual abuse while travelling to school; and family stress and tension in the home limiting opportunities to study.

To address these issues, teachers were trained in the basic principles of psychological first aid: Listen to the story, provide empathy, protect, give advice and information to prevent the problem from recurring, and connect to the child’s network to bolster support as needed. Demonstrations using role-play showed teachers new techniques to address specific issues with students. To address declines in student performance, some teachers proceeded to visit caregivers at home to talk through issues in the hope of finding ways to enhance learning opportunities.

For more information, visit http://frlan.tumblr.com/post/51869692799/psychosocial-well-being-within-refugee-education-in 

Region: Middle East and North Africa
Country: Egypt
Organization: African Middle East Refugee Assistnace
Sector: Mental Health/Psychosocial / Education

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Residence Cards and Work Permits for Colombian refugees in Panama

In Panama, the establishment of a procedure for granting permanent residence to Colombian refugees has significantly improved living conditions in Darien Province.  Previously, they wereliving under a Temporary Humanitarian Protection Scheme whereby they were  not formally recognized as refugees by the government.  The new ‘Law 81’ entitles Colombians to a permanent work permit and free movement.  Law 81 came into force in March 2012, and since then 413 permanent residence cards and work permits have been issued. UNHCR together with the Government and ONPAR (Oficina Nacional Para la Atencion a los Refugiados) have campaigned over the past two years to inform Colombian refugees of their rights, and to reinforce projects for sustainable integration (such as carpentry and tailoring).

Region: Americas
Country: Panama
Organization: UN agency
Sector: Durable Solutions / Documentation / Advocacy

      regional_unhcr_newsletter_june_2.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 740 KB

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Fighting discrimination and explaining Refugee Rights with a simple brochure

According to a JIPS/Quito Institute report delivered in 2013, 42% of Columbian refugees in Ecuador face discrimination when renting property, opening a bank account and finding employment. In spite of this, 84% of these refugees see their longer term future in Ecuador. To support their integration into new communities, UNHCR has published a booklet on the plight of people in flight. The manager of a medical enterprise in Quito explained how this changed her attitude towards Colombian refugees: ‘At the beginning I didn’t know much about refugees. So when the first person arrived I was worried. Later, they brought me this cute little booklet with drawings explaining the rights of refugees. Then I understood better and realized there was nothing to be worried about.’  

Region: Americas
Country: Ecuador
Organization: UN agency
Sector: Livelihoods / Documentation

      regional_unhcr_newsletter_june.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 740 KB

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Training on the impact of forced labor and human trafficking of refugees

An in depth study on the medical and psychological consequences of forced labour and human trafficking in Malaysia was conducted among refugees and asylum seekers from Burma. The study recommends that training on these consequences be developed for the following professionals:

- Police and lawyers to strengthen victim identification among refugees and asylum seekers.

- Social workers, mental health and medical personnel, who should also be provided with specialised clinical competencies required to provide care to persons who have experienced forced labour and human trafficking.

- Interpreters to be able to convey medical and mental health needs and issues to support counselling, psychotherapy and provision of medical care.

Region: Asia and the Pacific
Country: Malaysia
Organization:
Sector: Livelihoods / Health

      forced_labour_human_trafficking_and_mental_health_2.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 2.84 MB

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Healthy migrants in healthy cities

A study from McGill University in collaboration with the International Organisation for Migration assessed urban migrants’ access to healthcare in Nairobi in comparison with barriers faced by Kenyans living in the same locations. The framework for assessing access defined (1) availability, (2) geographic accessibility, (3) financial accessibility and (4) acceptability as the four dimensions of access. Recommendations of the study are:

- Partnerships and networks should help the Government to target healthcare for persons of concern. For example, organised networks can share referral systems and avoid duplication of activity.

- Migrant-sensitive services can be improved by eliminating language barriers and discrepancies in charges that restrict migrant access

- Cultural competence training of health care providers, and awareness raising of health issues related to the experiences of migrants is necessary to improve work with diverse populations

- The monitoring of migrant health should include monitoring of growing xenophobia towards migrants, official population demographics (both nationally and by healthcare facilities), and the effectiveness of health interventions relating to both migrant and host populations. 

Region: Africa
Country: Kenya
Organization: International Organization for Migration
Sector: Health

      urban_migrant_healthcare_in_nairobi_2.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 259 KB

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Recommendations on securing tenure for refugee returnees and IDPs

IDMC reviewed the actual and threatened evictions of IDPs and refugee returnees from informal settlements in and around major cities in Afghanistan. To ensure legal security of tenure, the review recommends:

- Legalisation programmes and informal settlement upgrading should be expanded

- Large scale, affordable, low cost and state subsidised housing options should be promoted

While working towards legal security of tenure, the review further recommends greater efforts be made to communicate with IDPs and refugee returnees:

- Formal eviction notices should be clearly communicated in advance

- Consultation and participation of affected communities should be a routine practice to ensure they are kept duly informed about all phases of the eviction

Region: Asia and the Pacific
Country: Afghanistan
Organization: The Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre
Sector: IDPS

      idmc_afghan_evictions_2.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 6.73 MB

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3 ways to link education and protection

(1) Refugee parents included in school Parent-Teacher-Associations

An ethnographic study on Community Based Child Protection Mechanisms among urban refugees in Kampala emphasised the protective effects of education. A highlighted good practice is to invite refugee parents to join school Parent-Teacher-Associations (PTAs):

- Refugee parents should be invited and encouraged to influence school policy and practice

- Refugee parents should be able to express themselves in the teaching language of the school, and schools should therefore offer flexible opportunities for language learning among parents of refugee students.

 

(2) Developing foundation classes for refugee students

Education ministries, refugee assisting organiations and CBOs should collaborate to explore possibilities for providing ‘foundation classes’ for children either before they join the formal education system, or alongside it. These classes could focus on English language alone or a combination of English language and basic educational skills, depending on whether the child had attended school in their home country. If these classes were linked to the mainstream educational system and formally linked to the curriculum, they could act as a ‘way in’ to formal education, rather than an alternative. Ideally, they would enable older children to join school at the grade they were at in their home countries rather than dropping to a lower level.

 

(3) Flexible school payment plans

Education ministries should require all government schools to be flexible regarding payment plans for refugee children, which can be agreed in discussion with parents. In Uganda, InterAid is already working with government schools which are part of the Universal Primary Education system to facilitate such a process. This approach should continue and be expanded until all government schools have been brought on board and a formal flexible-payment system established. 

Region: Africa
Country: Uganda
Organization: Other
Sector: Education / Child Protection

      cbcpms_uganda_2.pdf      Doc: Pdf      Size: 1.60 MB

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DISPLAYING RESULTS 1 to 25 out of 139
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