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Partnership in Resettlement

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© UNHCR/H. J. Davies

Resettlement is by definition a partnership activity. The resettlement of refugees relies on cooperation and evolving partnerships between the UN refugee agency, states, NGOs, international organizations, civil society, community-based groups and other partners.

UNHCR identifies refugees in need and submits their cases for resettlement. However, resettlement is dependent on states to provide permanent places of residence and support to integrate, and relies on NGOs and international organizations to play crucial roles throughout the whole resettlement process. Finally, refugees are partners in the process and - with the appropriate integration measures in place and support from receiving communities - are empowered to contribute to their new countries.

No country is legally obliged to resettle refugees, and accepting refugees is a demonstration of generosity on the part of governments. The number of states that have established regular resettlement programmes and committed themselves to an annual quota has grown steadily. Some countries also accept refugees for resettlement on an ad hoc basis in response to specific appeals.

The Working Group on Resettlement (WGR) and the Annual Tripartite Consultations on Resettlement (ATCR) meetings provide a dynamic forum for collaborative efforts between UNHCR, governments, NGOs, and international organizations to enhance the use of resettlement, identify and address challenges, and shape joint strategies and directions.

Collaboration between resettlement partners extends from identification and referral in the field, through processing, acceptance and travel to reception and integration in a third country. UNHCR continues to strengthen partnerships with NGOs through formal agreements and the deployment of NGO personnel to UNHCR operations.

To support and encourage strengthened cooperation, UNHCR and NGOs have developed the UNHCR-NGO Toolkit for Practical Cooperation on Resettlement. This also assists in developing consistency and predictability in the way UNHCR offices engage NGO partners in the field of resettlement.





An alternative for those who cannot go home, made possible by UNHCR and governments.

UNHCR-ICMC Resettlement Deployment Scheme

UNHCR and the International Catholic Migration Commission support for resettlement activities.

Annual Tripartite Consultations on Resettlement (ATCR)

A mechanism to enhance partnership between UNHCR, Governments and NGOs.