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Refugee Sponsorship Programs: A Global State of Play and Opportunities for Investment

Posted on:
December 18, 2019

Summary

A pair of contradictory trends is challenging humanitarian protection systems around the world: the number of refugees in need of protection has climbed to an all-time high, while at the same time, many countries have reduced their commitments to refugee resettlement. With protection needs high and generosity low, it has become more important to find new ways for refugees to reach safety and to rebuild public consensus around the value of offering protection to those in need.

To meet these challenges, governments and civil-society groups in a growing number of countries have begun to explore refugee sponsorship (also called community or private sponsorship), either as a complement or alternative to traditional protection pathways. This MPI Europe policy brief takes stock of sponsorship programs worldwide—from the well-established Canadian private sponsorship program, to much newer and smaller-scale initiatives in countries such as Argentina, Germany, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom.

Although government investment and support for such programs are essential, this study also lays out a variety of ways private philanthropic actors can support these programs. Among them: funding the development of informational materials and hotlines for sponsors; investing in program infrastrucrture, such as staff positions within civil-society organizations; and monitoring and evaluation by civil society and/or government. Crucially, the authors note that while much effort in recent years has gone into developing and launching new initiatives, existing programs also face important capacity and funding gaps. “To ensure the capacity of refugee protection systems at a global level,” they write, “strengthening these programs should be viewed as a priority equal in importance to setting up new schemes.”

Other recent MPI publications | Autre publications récentes de MPI :

2019-11 : Volunteers and Sponsors : A Catalyst for Refugee Integration

2019-11 : Creating a Home in Canada: Refugee Housing Challenges and Potential Policy Solutions

2019-10 : Legal Migration for Work and Training: Mobility Options to Europe for Those Not in Need of Protection

2019-10 : Changing U.S. Policy and Safe-Third Country “Loophole” Drive Irregular Migration to Canada

2019-09 : Changing Mexico-U.S. Migration Patterns and Opportunities for Sustainable Cooperation

2019-09 : On the Brink: Prospects for UK Nationals in the EU-27 after a No-Deal Brexit

2019-08 : Leveraging the Potential of Home Visiting Programs to Serve Immigrant and Dual Language Learner Families

2019-08 : Immigration and the U.S. Labor Market: A Look Ahead

2019-08 : Rethinking U.S. Immigration Policy: New Realities Call for New Answers

2019-08 : From Control to Crisis: Changing Trends and Policies Reshaping U.S.-Mexico Border Enforcement

2019-07 : Start-Up Visas: A Passport for Innovation and Growth?

2019-07 : A Growing Destination for Sub-Saharan Africans, Morocco Wrestles with Immigrant Integration

Source:

Research at a Glance is designed to inform the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) community and other interested parties about recently published, policy-relevant research from government, academic and NGO sources. The views expressed in the documents described do not necessarily reflect those of IRCC.

Summary

This MPI Europe policy brief takes stock of sponsorship programs worldwide - from the well-established Canadian private sponsorship program, to much newer and smaller-scale initiatives in countries such as Argentina, Germany, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom - and lays out a variety of ways private philanthropic actors can support these programs.
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