Stronger bonds between hosts and migrants build more inclusive societies – World
Migrants have the potential to expand their own income, education, health and lifestyle choices, fill labor shortages, start businesses, innovate and pay taxes in their host countries. . They send funds to their families back home, investing and funding local development initiatives.
By providing hospitality, host communities can play a critical role in economic growth, reducing inequalities and connecting diverse societies. Host countries, often grappling with development challenges themselves, offer asylum, protection and security to those fleeing danger.
At the same time, the number of people forcibly displaced as refugees, asylum seekers and internally displaced persons has reached record levels. Images of thousands of people chaotically crossing borders have politicized the debate and led to policies aimed at stopping human movements.
Refugees often lack security, health care and education. Their presence can add an additional burden to infrastructure, the labor market and basic services, creating tensions with local populations. Without support to host communities, refugees can face discrimination, exploitation and gender-based violence.
The United Nations General Assembly has recognized the crucial link between human mobility and development in the Global Compact on Refugees and the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration.
The quadrennial Global Refugee Forum and Senior Officials Meeting take stock of progress made in implementing the Global Compact on Refugees. The first Forum was held in 2019, and the first Senior Officials Meeting took place on December 14-15, 2021.
UNDP works with governments and partners in approximately 45 countries that either host large refugee populations, are vulnerable to forced displacement crises, or encourage people to return voluntarily.
Development solutions to forced displacement
Widespread violence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo has led to people being driven from their homes, especially in North Kivu, South Kivu, Ituri and Kasai. The country also hosts half a million refugees from neighboring countries.
UNDP works in partnership with the United Nations refugee agency, UNHCR, to provide humanitarian assistance, support the integration of displaced people, strengthen local governance and improve people’s participation.
A project in Ituri helped people displaced by conflict to better integrate into new communities by offering support to small businesses, while another in Lake Kivu provides work and livelihood opportunities for vulnerable people while fighting erosion of soils.
Amineta’s family were able to buy a hand press to extract palm oil. She and her family have moved into their new home. âAfter just two months of work, the list of orders keeps growing every day,â she says. âOur life is now in Mambasa. We bought some land and are building our house.
UNDP is also helping regional support platforms, including the Regional Plan for Refugees and Resilience to the Syrian Crisis. It responds to the needs of refugees and affected communities in Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq and Turkey.
Sene is one of 3.6 million Syrian refugees in Turkey. With the salary she earned during the summer cotton harvest, she rented land and began to cultivate and sell vegetables. The training she received allowed her to develop her business.
âTurkey has become a home for us and allowed us to earn an income,â she says. âMy family would face more challenges without my support. “
Strengthen the link between host and migrant communities
Social cohesion is a key issue, with tensions created by increased competition for jobs, rising costs of living and access to basic services. In Lebanon, the lack of security and justice services and human rights violations committed by the security forces are exacerbating tensions.
In collaboration with the Ministry of Justice, UNDP professionalized the security forces and offered free legal aid. There has been a ten percent increase in public satisfaction with the police.
UNDP is a member of the Afghan Refugee Solutions Strategy, a regional support platform spanning Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan. UNDP works with UNHCR to ensure that national peace and development plans target high priority areas.
Following the events in Afghanistan in August, a goal for the next 12 months in Pakistan is to revitalize local economies. Activities with government, partners, refugees and host communities will include training, placement and small business creation.
Digital technology for the integration of communities
For migrants and displaced people, digital technology offers unique benefits and opportunities to improve their livelihoods. Online, they can learn skills, access essential information and services, and network. They can find better jobs, start businesses, or explore new markets.
In Lima, Peru, UNDP is working with the municipality, UNHCR, ILO, private companies, universities and social labs to provide online training, artificial intelligence for coaching on business models and a platform -Collaborative digital form to accelerate the integration of refugees, migrants and host populations.
The project, Digital Futures, targets 5,000 refugees, migrants and members of host communities in Lima. So far, 890 participants have taken the entrepreneurial training online, and nearly a quarter of them have engaged in coaching and feedback in artificial intelligence.
The team is now engaging with local private sector companies to develop and deliver tailor-made products and services to refugees and migrants who have so far supported more than 1,500 entrepreneurs. The collaborative digital platform, Future now, also incorporates the creativity, perspective and needs of the Venezuelan populations in Lima.
Building a more inclusive, sustainable and resilient world
When migrants, refugees and internally displaced people do not have freedom of movement or cannot find work, when they and their children lack education and training opportunities adequate, the cycle of poverty is doomed to continue. When migrants are excluded and discriminated against, the benefits of migration are lost.
Our ability to meet these international commitments requires urgent action to strengthen the contribution of human mobility to sustainable development.
With the right support and policies, migrants, including forcibly displaced people, can improve their own well-being, make vital contributions to the development of host communities, and help build a more inclusive, sustainable and resilient world. .