Pre-defined Project title: Assisted voluntary return and reintegration of vulnerable groups

Project PromoterProgramme outcome the project contributes to:Project grant rate:Maximum project grant amount:
IOM – International Organization for Migration Orderly and humane voluntary return of migrants or vulnerable groups is secured 100%€ 1,000,000

Through the proposed programme, IOM will provide AVRR assistance to migrants in situations of vulnerability, expressing the will to return to their country of origin. The target will particularly consist of 290 cases of migrants in situations of vulnerability, identified primarily at the Greek borders, and shall include, among others, single parent families, victims of trafficking, migrants with health-related needs, UMCs and elderly migrants. Beneficiaries will receive effective and comprehensive assistance, based on the experience and lessons learned acquired by IOM throughout the years of AVRR operations.

Outcome 1: Migrants in need of return support are able to make an informed decision on return

Under this outcome the following results are foreseen:

• Output 1.1: Migrants have access to relevant information about the voluntary return support

IOM Greece will provide detailed information to potential beneficiaries in situations of vulnerability who are considering returning to their country of origin. The aim will be to provide them with general information about the AVRR programme, which will enable migrants to decide whether or not to enrol in the programme. In addition, throughout the project implementation, IOM will ensure that adequate and appropriate information is disseminated about the AVRR options through the IOM official website and social media channels. Information will be mainly provided directly by IOM Greece staff, both by the Registration Officers/Cultural Mediators, as welll as the AVRR field staff being present in open and closed facilities across the country under the AMIF National Programme. In addition, IOM Greece has already developed under the past and in the framework of the current AMIF National AVRR programme a solid network of collaboration with key stakeholders (i.e. Embassies, Consulates, migrant communities etc.), who play an important role in outreach and referral of potential beneficiaries to IOM Greece.

• Output 1.2: Migrants receive tailor-made counselling and pre-departure assistance to prepare for their return

IOM Registration/Cultural Mediators will conduct counselling sessions with beneficiaries, where the situation in the country of origin as well as the benefits and types of assistance included in the programme will be discussed to ensure that the third country nationals will make a well-informed decision on their return.

In addition, counselling sessions are an opportunity to identify and assess the needs of each individual, including aspects such as gender, age etc in order to provide proper information and advice. This will be done through – where possible and in line with available resources – assigning counsellors to migrants that share the same sex as the migrants and with the necessary professional background in counselling migrants in situations of vulnerability; in particular, IOM Registration/Cultural Mediators will closely collaborate with the Reintegration counsellor who have such expertise. Moreover, during the counselling sessions, IOM Reintegration counsellor will draft a social history report including detailed feedback by the beneficiary on whether he/she has been identified as being in situation of vulnerability due to gender/age characteristics in the country of origin or in Greece. This report provides a basis to also determine the reintegration needs of the individual and plan the reintegration process accordingly.
Following the abovementioned assessment, each beneficiary will receive targeted information in line with his/her needs on the return procedures and types of assistance provided by IOM, in order to ensure that an informative decision is made on a voluntary and on a case-by-case basis. For example, a refferal will be made to special protection services provided by IOM or/and other actors.
In cases of UMCs, IOM will collaborate with IOM Offices in country of origin for the completion of family tracing and family assessment procedures. The relevant report will be submitted to the Minor’s Prosecutor who will decide if the return is in the best interests of the child.
For returnees with health needs, IOM Greece will assess the availability and accessibility of care for migrants with health needs as a precondition to determine whether the return can take place. In addition, IOM Greece will provide health assistance by deploying specialised medical staff, who will supervise and monitor the health needs and situation, and by also covering necessary costs for medical exams. IOM staff will proceed with health assessments and medical report to receive medical clearance from the airlines for the boarding of the returnee and any addiitonal arrangements to be done (wheelchair, medicines, etc.).
In addition, upon assessment and counselling due to the vulnerabilities of the target group of the project, IOM staff will ensure that the migrants have access to protection and assistance (medical assistance, psychological support, etc.) by referring when needed to public entities and to other actors (e.g. NGOs).
Finally, destitute returnees (except from UMCs) will be referred to the Open Center for migrants registered to the AVRR projects , in order to receive adequate accommodation until the preparation of their travelling documents and their departure.

Outcome 2: Project beneficiaries are able to travel in a safe and organized manner from host country to their final destination in country of origin
Under this outcome the following results are foreseen:

• Output 2.1: Migrants’ travel is facilitated in timely, individualized, and effective manner
For migrants wishing to voluntarily return, IOM Greece will apply return procedures, in line with internal policies and rules. In particular, IOM will proceed with: ticketing in commercial flights, support for the issuance of travel documents, pre-departure assistance prior to the departure, assistance at the airport the day of departure check-in and boarding procedures, provision of one-time cash grant of 500 Euro per returnee in order to cover their most basic needs after their departure from Greece, assistance in transit points and finally, reception assistance in collaboration with IOM Missions in countries of origin.
IOM will also provide operational or medical escort during the trip upon need according to the health assessment carried out prior to departure for migrants with health needs as well as for UMCs, in line with IOM movement policies and procedures.
• Output 2.2: Beneficiaries are provided with transit assistance
IOM Greece will inform well in advance and collaborate with IOM Offices in transit countries in order to provide transit assistance to the returnees. Assistance may include the provision of meal vouchers, medical assistance in cases of need and support for boarding in the flight to the final destination.
• Output 2.3: Beneficiaries are provided with reception assistance at ports of entry in country of origin
IOM Greece will timely inform prior to the departure from Greece the IOM Offices in the final destination country to provide reception assistance to retunees upon arrival. Assistance may include faciliatation and/or acceleration of immigration procedures upon arrival, hand-over procedure for UMCs etc.
Outcome 3: Returnees are supported in their reintegration process
• Output 3.1: Beneficiaries are provided with reintegration assistance in a clear, timely and effective manner

Reintegration assistance under this project may include, but will not be limited to, the development of income generating activities, such as the start-up of microbusiness and job placement, vocational training, psychosocial support, medical assistance, child care support, educational assistance, temporary accommodation and purchase of household items. The assistance can be used for one of the abovementioned types or split among multiple activities.

Reintegration assistance will be provided to returnees in kind as follows:

1. 150 individual returness will develop reintegration plans up to 1,500 EUR and;
2. 40 families (average 3.5 members) will develop reintegration plans up to 2,500 EUR. The assistance will be given to the head of family, nevertheless, this will not exclude women and children from the planning and the decision-making process.

Considering that reintegation assistance has a particular added value to return procedures, IOM will ensure that adequate and specific information is provided on the available reintegration assistance options and procedures. To this end, individual counseling sessions taking into consideration the needs of each individual, including aspects such as gender, age etc will be conducted by the IOM Greece reintegration counsellor with the support of cultural mediators. During the counseling session, the reintegration beneficiary will receive proper information according to his/her needs in order to develop a tailor-made reintegration plan according to their specific needs, individual characteristics, migratory experiences, risk/vulnerability factors, as well as protective factors such as skills acquired.

Through the individualized counselling sessions, beneficiaries will be able to explore all their available options in the country of origin, as well as receive proper information on the assistance that they will receive. The reintegration counsellor, taking into account gender-related matters and the prevailing socio-economic conditions in each country, will identify and propose to each beneficiary possible options for their smooth and holistic reintegration, while assuring that their rights are safeguarded and their needs are comprehensively addressed. Specific focus will be placed on the development of plans that enable women to become independent both socially and economically upon their retun in the CoO. More specifically, in family cases, extensive counselling will be conducted, apart from the head of family, with the female members as well, in order to promote their empowerment, ensure gender equality and enhance their reintegration potential. As far as migrants with health needs or UMC are concerned, the reintegration counselling organized by IOM Greece will take into consideration results gathered from the assessment of availability/accessibility of medical health care and treatment in the country of origin and the family assessment, respectively. In this sense, a reintegration plan tailored-made to the UMC’s needs could include vocational training, scholling, language courses, employment possibilities etc.

Following the completion of the counseling process by the IOM Greece reintegration counsellor, IOM Greece will communicate with the IOM Office in the country of origin in order to ensure the effective implementation of the reintegration plan on time. Upon his/her return, the beneficiary, as advised by IOM Greece, will contact IOM Office in the country of origin to complete the appropriate procedure (e.g. submission of supporting documentation etc.) and start implementing his/her plan.
Upon arrival in the country of origin the IOM Reintegration counsellor in the country of origin will conduct individual counselling sessions that build on the information gathered prior to departure. In certain cases, such as UMC or migrants with particular medical needs that need treatment/care from family members, the IOM Mission will conduct counselling sessions with the returnee and the family in order to confirm the initial plan developed in Greece and engage the family in the process.

Furthermore, for migrants with health related needs, the counselling and the development of the plan will be based on the medical assessment conducted by the physician in Greece and shall foresee the nessecary medical care, treatment, exams etc. in the country of origin.

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