IOM Egypt Secures Phase II of Regional Programme for the Protection of Vulnerable and Stranded Migrants

Cairo, 7 October 2019 - The International Organization for Migration (IOM) has been responding to the increasingly complex and diverse migration context across North Africa through the provision of voluntary return and reintegration to stranded migrants, protection and humanitarian services for vulnerable groups—particularly unaccompanied and separated children (UASCs), victims of trafficking (VoTs), advocacy for protection mechanisms and collaboration networks with governments. In Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria and Egypt the interest in IOM’s Direct Assistance Programme, including the Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration (AVRR), has steadily increased over the last few years, with some IOM missions facing backlogs of several thousand vulnerable migrants while completing the assistance service of several thousand more. In the coming two years, Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria and Egypt are projected to facilitate the voluntary return and reintegration of some 8,000 or more stranded and vulnerable migrants through various projects.

This support will be also possible thanks to a two-year, USD 11 million project granted last week by the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation of the Kingdom of the Netherlands as a second phase of the programme PROTECT.

With these funds and others, IOM will continue to support the voluntary return and reintegration of an increasing number of stranded migrants across North Africa and continue its support to other stranded and vulnerable migrants through a variety of essential forms of assistance. This, coupled with the diverse protection and humanitarian assistance system needs of various communities and governments, will be addressed through the harmonized approach of several regional programmes working in tandem to meet the urgent needs of migrants in the implementing countries.

“In light of the number of migrants in distress that are seeking IOM assistance for Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration in this region, a synergized approach of the different interventions to these needs is essential,” said IOM Egypt Chief of Mission, Laurent de Boeck on PROTECT II’s role in responding to protection needs in the region. “Thanks to the generous contributions of the Government of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, this and other complementary interventions will help to expand the geographic and methodological scope and protections available to stranded and vulnerable migrants.”

Meanwhile, the programme will also support collective reintegration programmes whose innovative approaches seek to build economically and socially sustainable activities that respond to the real-time needs of communities and returnees.  The reintegration process will involve analysis of local communities to determine the most appropriate activities and projects that will serve the community at large. This will be partially supported in Ethiopia by a series of community-based discussions which bring together returnees and key community leaders to discuss and generate innovative ideas tailored to the community needs.

Furthermore, IOM will support the development of national referral mechanisms, standard operating procedures, and institutional frameworks for protection of vulnerable migrants, UASCs and VoTs with governments of the implementing countries, supporting through capacity building, partnership and advocacy on migration priorities.

For more information please contact Wigdan Mohamad atIOM Egypt, Tel: + 20 10 12428527,Email: