Resettlement represents a durable solution for vulnerable forced migrants alongside local integration and voluntary repatriation, a protection tool for people whose lives and liberty are at risk. Since the 1970s, several European countries have established formal resettlement programs in partnership with UNHCR. Since 1999, with the worsening of violence and conflicts in neighbouring areas, the EU has been working to create a Common European Asylum System (CEAS) and improve the current legislative framework to harmonise integration and asylum policy among member states. The European Union is also working to strengthen and develop a Union Resettlement Framework connecting different actors involved in refugee resettlement as stated in the 2015 European Agenda on Migration. Since 2016, however, the need to research and develop complementary pathway for refugees’ admission into Europe, including private sponsorship programs, has been evident.
Traditionally, a humanitarian corridor has been defined as a type of temporary demilitarized zone intended to allow the safe transit of humanitarian aid in, and/or refugees out of a crisis region. In this context, however, Humanitarian Corridors (HC) are a safe and legal tool to facilitate the admission of vulnerable people to another country. Although HC share many features with resettlement, they fall under the umbrella of complementary pathways rather than resettlement schemes. For example, a wider group may be eligible for admission to HC and, whilst participants are issued with a visa which permits entry as part of the programme, they will require to make a formal application for international protection after arrival.
Diaconia Valdese (DV), together with the Federation of Protestant Churches in Italy (FCEI), and the Protestant Federation of France (FEP) in France signed Minutes of Agreement with the relevant Ministries for the establishment of Humanitarian Corridors (HC) to ensure the legal and safe resettlement of vulnerable people in need of international/humanitarian protection from outside the EU. The Project aims to promote legal, safe and durable integration practices and is co-funded by the European Union under the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund (AMIF).
The first objective of the project is to ensure that migrants arriving in Italy and France via HCs will be accompanied towards their full and effective social, cultural and economic integration within EU society through the implementation of a wide range of pre-departure and post-arrival activities.
Secondly, the achievements of the Humanitarian Corridors experiences in France and in Italy will be disseminated to institutions and practitioners in Europe so as to incentivise the application of durable European integration practices within private sponsorship and other complementary pathways.
WP1: Integration and inclusion within the Humanitarian Corridor (HC) private sponsorship scheme.
This WP aims to accompany vulnerable people arriving in Italy and France via HCs towards their full and effective social, cultural and economic integration within EU society. Diaconia Valdese in Italy and FEP in France will continue organizing pre-departure and post-arrival activities for 450 people seeking international protection and looking for a durable solution where voluntary repatriation and local integration are not feasible.
WP2: Identification and dissemination of good integration practices.
Actions will be focused on the identification of integration practices collected in Italy, France and the UK, within private sponsorship or resettlement initiatives to favour durable integration practices in Europe. Activities involve desk research, organisation of focus groups, and the development of a briefing paper on good practices to be disseminated among key private and public stakeholders. Lastly, Safe Passage (Citizens UK) will organize training modules in France, Italy, Belgium and Greece to share the findings with respect to durable integration practices with a range of practitioners.
This website was funded by the European Union’s Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund