CRRF - UNHCR

Strengthening the National Health System in Turkey

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Country or region: Europe, Turkey
CRRF Pillar: Pillar 3
Actors: Governments, United Nations agencies, Persons of concern
CRRF Objectives: Objective 2

Turkey is the country hosting the largest number of refugees in the world. The WHO Emergency Operation team in Ankara supports the Ministry of Health in dealing with the protracted Syrian refugee emergency. In line with the Regional Refugee and Resilience Plan (3RP), activities focus on strengthening national health system to cope with an additional three million people by expanding culturally-sensitive primary healthcare, providing immunization services, addressing mental health needs, and leading the health sector response.

A specific area of intervention was identified in Primary Health Care, providing linguistic and culturally sensitive healthcare was a crucial step in the humanitarian response. In order to do so, an innovative approach was adopted: the doctors and nurses needed to serve the three million refugee population would have been identified among the Syrian themselves. This approach was directly addressing linguistic barriers and human resources need, empowering and building resilience for refugees and host communities.

In order to do so the Turkish Government, in consultation from WHO, has drafted a law in 2016, which authorizes Syrian health professionals to provide medical treatment to Syrian refugees in Turkey. To accommodate this, the Ministry of Health (MoH) planned to open Refugee Health Centers (RHCs) in approximately 260 locations across Turkey.

Within these RHCs, approximately 700 Refugee Health Units (RHUs) are being established (primary health care centers), each to be staffed with one Syrian doctor and one Syrian nurse to treat Syrian patients under the supervision of Provincial Public Health Directorates. In these RHCs, medical services to Syrian patients are currently provided by Turkish doctors with the assistance of translators.

Before the Syrian health professionals can work in these RHCs, they need to successfully complete a WHO training programme, which serves to qualify the Syrian health care providers to obtain their work permits. The training is both theoretical and practical, the latter takes place in the Refugee Health Training Centers (RHTCs). The trainings aim to teach the health personnel how to operate in the Turkish national health system. In 2017, WHO provided adaption classroom trainings to approximately 750 Syrian doctors and 500 Syrian nurses. Approximately 500 of them also completed the six-week joint WHO-MoH practical trainings in Refugee Health Training Centers, enabling them to obtain a work permit and to be recruited by the Ministry to serve in ‘Refugee Health Centres’ (PHC units all across Turkey). Recruitment is ongoing (approx. 300 already hired) and in 2017 the seven Refugee Health Training Centers have been continuously providing linguistically- and culturally-sensitive consultations to refugees and migrants.

Teacher Incentives Programme for Syrian Volunteer Teachers

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Country or region: Turkey, Europe
CRRF Pillar: Pillar 3
Actors: Governments, United Nations agencies
CRRF Objectives: Objective 2

In November 2014, UNICEF, together with the Ministry of National Education (MoNE), introduced a Teacher Incentive Programme in an effort to enhance the quality of education provided to Syrian refugee children enrolled in temporary education centres (TECs) across Turkey.

The programme aims to retain qualified Syrian volunteer teachers, improve their technical capacity, morale and motivation in the classroom, mitigate the need to resort to negative coping mechanisms (such as sending their own children into early marriage or the labour market) – and as a result promote a safe and protective learning environment for Syrian children in Turkey.
Teacher eligibility and selection is determined by MoNE according to agreed-upon standards, and in coordination with the targeted provinces and temporary education centres (TECs). In order to qualify for incentives, teachers must work in a MoNE-accredited school for at least 20 hours per week.

Incentive rates were initially set at USD $150/month for teachers in camps and $220 for teachers in host communities, raising it in 2015 to 600 Turkish Lira (approximately US $200) for teachers in camps and 900 Turkish Lira (approximately $300) for teachers in host communities. In 2016, after discussions and agreement with MoNE, the incentive rate increased again to 1,300 TL for teachers in both camps and host communities, which roughly corresponds to the legal minimum net wage in Turkey.

Higher education in Turkey

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Country or region: Turkey, Europe
CRRF Pillar: Pillar 3
Actors: Governments
CRRF Objectives: Objective 2

UNHCR initiated two complementary programmes to promote access to higher education programmes by refugee youth. Both programmes are implemented in partnership with the Presidency for Turks Abroad and Related Communities (YTB), the State entity responsible for the management of the Turkish government’s international scholarship programme, Turkiye Burslari. The first programme provides students with scholarships to attend a nine-month intensive language instruction programme to meet the language proficiency requirements for admission to Turkish universities. The second programme offers a comprehensive scholarship package through UNHCR’s global scholarship programme, known by its German acronym, DAFI. At the start of 2017, 820 scholarship holders were enrolled in university or university preparation programmes through this initiative. The cooperation modality with YTB means that administrative elements of scholarship management are aligned with those used in the management of the Government of Turkey’s international scholarship programme.
UNHCR is also contributing to the Turkiye Burslari programme by supporting 354 scholarships for refugee youth in Turkey.

The programme is considered an example of good practice as it illustrates burden sharing between an international organisation and a government partner with the intervention building on existing interventions. Through cost-savings derived from the association with YTB, it is possible for these UNHCR-supported programmes to reach more beneficiaries. The interventions also enable more students to benefit from the Government of Turkey’s policies that facilitate refugees’ access to higher education through a waiver of academic tuition fees for Syrian students.

Investment in higher education for refugees combines both the need to provide immediate assistance and longer-term investment in the refugee community to ensure that youth have access to meaningful, skilled employment with opportunities to be higher wage earners than if they were unskilled or semi-skilled.

Labour market integration in Turkey

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Country or region: Turkey, Europe
CRRF Pillar: Pillar 3
Actors: Governments, United Nations agencies
CRRF Objectives: Objective 2

The Government of Turkey took significant steps for Syrians under Temporary Protection to be integrated into the labour market. In January 2016 “Work Permit Regulation” (for people under TP) was issued. Through this regulation, integration of Syrians to the formal workforce was accelerated. As a complement, several UN Agencies began to support the efforts of the GoT by their programmes aiming both supply and demand side of labour market through job placements, trainings, grants etc.

The Government of Turkey has also been playing an active role to promote higher education for Syrians under Temporary Protection. As a complement, UN Agencies began to implement similar programmes aiming Syrians in cooperation with respective state institutions and ministries.

Provision of healthcare services has always remained as a focus for the GoT. To facilitate the integration of Syrian healthcare workers to the Turkish system, respective UN Agencies worked in cooperation with the state institutions and ministries.

Emergency Social Safety Net (ESSN) programme

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Country or region: Turkey, Europe
CRRF Pillar: Pillar 2
Actors: Governments
CRRF Objectives: Objective 2

In Turkey, the EU-funded Emergency Social Safety Net (ESSN) programme, implemented by the Ministry of Family and Social Policy (MoFSP), the Turkish Red Crescent (TRC), and the World Food Programme (WFP), seeks to address basic needs of 1.3 million refugees across the country through the provision of multi-purpose unrestricted cash (MPC). In the ESSN’s design and implementation, several good practices can be observed including, but not limited to, the following:

1. Alignment of the programme with the Turkish welfare system and the leveraging of national capacities: The ESSN represents a hybrid social assistance scheme which, importantly, is anchored on and aligned with government systems and integrates crucial humanitarian safeguards. In designing the programme, it was recognized that addressing needs among off-camp refugees in Turkey would require major capacity and geographical reach; therefore, given their respective capability and their achievements in meeting the needs of Turkish citizens, it was agreed to leverage the government social welfare system and utilize TRC’s extensive capacity and networks to enable timely programme roll-out and scale-up. Accordingly, MoFSP and TRC have assumed the primary role in ESSN implementation, with WFP providing oversight, monitoring, and accountability, and reinforcing WFP and TRC capacity to deliver the programme in a responsible, transparent, and accountable manner. This approach has, simultaneously, helped to ensure value for money and sustainability.

2. Establishment of a Joint Management Cell to optimize coordination between WFP, TRC, and other stakeholders: In an unprecedented approach, a Joint WFP-TRC Management Cell (WFP-TRC JMC) has been set up to optimise collaboration in the management of the ESSN programme and foster the exchange of knowledge between the partners. WFP and TRC staff, fulfilling JMC functions in accordance with their respective roles and capacities, are now co-located in mixed agency thematic teams at the same premises in the Turkish capital, Ankara. To expedite troubleshooting and decision-making on issues identified during the ESSN’s implementation, representatives of MoFSP and the Directorate General of Migration Management (DGMM) are also invited to take part in weekly JMC meetings on an as-needed basis.

Social assistance in Turkey

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Country or region: Turkey, Europe
CRRF Pillar: Pillar 2
Actors: Governments
CRRF Objectives: Objective 2

The Government of Turkey (GoT) has provided social assistance (cash and in kind) in various sectors. The coverage of health services at all stages for Syrians under Temporary Protection and for the persons having registered as international protection applicants contributes to dignified and adequate standards of living for refugee communities living in Turkey. As an extension to those programmes, several programmes covering Syrians under Temporary Protection began to be implemented under the coordination of relevant state institutions. Moreover, in terms of infrastructure development, both the central and local administrations have worked to develop the infrastructure, especially where the refugee population is dense.

Turkey’s reception and admission processes

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Country or region: Turkey
CRRF Pillar: Pillar 1
Actors: Governments
CRRF Objectives: Objective 1, Objective 2

The Directorate General of Migration Management (DGMM), established in April 2013 under the Ministry of Interior, is entrusted to coordinate the overall registration processes of Syrian refugees, identify people in need and provide safe reception conditions in line with the Temporray Protection Regulation (TPR). The Regulation adopted a rights-based approach enabling access to services, including health, education and labour market aiming to offer Syrian refugees adequate coverage in terms of basic services. UN Agencies contributed to this process in a holistic manner by supporting the responsible institutions in terms of capacity development, sharing of experiences and provision of necessary equipment.

Turkey has demonstrated strong national leadership and ownership since the beginning of the crisis. The national asylum law was endorsed and secondary legislation developed in the past years to strengthen the national asylum regime and define roles and responsibilities of state institutions in the protection of and assistance to refugees.

The Law on Foreigners and International Protection has provisions regulating that foreigners cannot be detained due to their asylum application while asylum applicants can only be detained on the exceptional grounds regulated in the Law. Alternatives to detention shall be prioritised in consideration of any measures concerning the individual applicant.
To support state institutions in service provision to persons of concern, the UN significantly scaled up its support to ministries and local authorities in the past years. One example is the support the Social Service Centres (SSC) under the Ministry of Family and Social Policies, which is tasked to conduct outreach and provide counselling and social assistance to vulnerable Turkish and refugee families. The support provided includes deployment of staff (social workers, counsellors, interprets), equipment and vehicles.

Asylum applicants, status holders, and TP beneficiaries can benefit from the legal aid mechanisms like any citizens in the country. They are in most of the cases exempt from the procedures (such as submission of documentation on their financial means) which the citizens are expected to fulfil.

Joint UNHCR-UNDP Programming on the DRC Situation

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Country or region: Africa, Democratic Republic of the Congo
CRRF Pillar: Pillar 5
Actors:
CRRF Objectives: Objective 1, Objective 4

The first UNHCR – UNDP Joint-Programming Workshop on the Refugee Response Plan to the DRC Situation was held on 02-03 July, at the United Nations Office in Nairobi. The workshop was organized by the Offices of UNHCR Regional Refugee Coordinator for the DRC Situation, Ann Encontre, and UNDP Sub Regional Platform Coordinator, David Clapp, and follows the UNHCR High Commissioner’s and UNDP Administrator’s message of 30 October 2017 on strengthening collaboration. The level of attendees, the degree of engagement, and the concrete results of the workshop demonstrate the eagerness of both agencies to put the global agreement into action in the sub-region.
The 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda and the principle of “Leaving No One Behind”, as well as the Global Compact on Refugees and its Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF) approach, provided an important framework for this collaboration.

The main objective of the workshop was to identify and start developing joint humanitarian, development and peace programming in the 5 thematic areas to be reflected in the 2019 Regional Refugee Response Plan (RRRP) for the DRC situation. The agencies started to agree on work plans and explored the concrete mechanisms and structures needed to overcome roadblocks to joint implementation. They also started to outline resource needs, including technical support requirements from HQ and regional service centres.

Please click here for more information. 

 

Supporting Ethiopia’s refugee response

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Country or region: Africa, Ethiopia
CRRF Pillar: Pillar 5
Actors: Development actors, Governments, United Nations agencies
CRRF Objectives: Objective 1, Objective 2

The German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) supports Ethiopia in its refugee response. Ethiopia is the second largest host country of refugees in Africa, hosting refugees from South Sudan, Eritrea and Somalia. As one of the CRRF roll-out countries Ethiopia has committed to nine reforms, among which one aims at increasing the enrolment rates of refugees in primary, secondary and tertiary education and another one at the enhancement of the provision of basic social services. German support focuses specifically on these pledges.

German development cooperation supports three of the main regions in Ethiopia hosting refugees (Gambella, Tigray, Somali region) as well as urban refugees in Addis Ababa. Based on the extensive experience in supporting Ethiopia’s education sector, German development cooperation also supports the Ethiopian Federal Ministry of Education regarding the government’s recent pledges to more strongly promote refugees’ education. In addition, a staff secondment to the National CRRF Coordination Unit is foreseen, to further strengthen the national capacities in implementing the CRRF pledges.

BMZ’ integrative approach in supporting Ethiopia in its reforms, which is especially challenging given the context of a strict encampment policy, is replicable in other contexts as well. BMZ and the implementing partners KfW and GIZ apply this conflict-sensitive, integrative approach and measures to the local context and still fully comply to the Ethiopian legal and policy framework.

By strengthening state actors and local communities as well as refugees, the resilience of displaced and host communities is increased and employment perspectives are improved.

Please find a comprehensive overview of the support to Ethiopia’s refugee response provided by Germany’s development cooperation here.

Making use of the skills and talents of newcomers in Germany

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Country or region: Germany
CRRF Pillar: Pillar 3
Actors: Academia
CRRF Objectives: Objective 1, Objective 2

A ground-breaking programme makes use of the skills and talents of newcomers. The pilot scheme is aimed at preparing newly arrived teachers for jobs in German schools. The Refugee Teachers Programme, based at Potsdam University, is designed to help newcomers learn the ropes of the German education system and have them teaching again within just 18 months.

 

Read the full article here.


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