READ BELOW the REMARKS MADE by Giampaolo Silvestri, Secretary General of AVSI, at The "International Solidarity Conference on the Venezuelan Refugee and Migrant Crisis" held in Brussels on October 28-29 and organized by the EU, IOM and UNHCR
October 29, 2019 — Approximately 4.5 million Venezuelans have fled as a result of the political turmoil, socio-economic instability, and humanitarian crisis in their country. The international community is actively involved in supporting the host countries bearing the burden of the refugee and migrant crisis. Since 2018, AVSI has been working in reception centers and through social and economic integration actions.
On October 28-29, in Brussels, the European Union, with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM), co-hosted the International Solidarity Conference on the Venezuelan Refugee and Migrant Crisis.
The event aimed to raise global awareness about the Venezuelan refugee and migrant crisis and the efforts of hosting countries and communities. The conference also wanted to mobilize support in addressing the refugee and migrant crisis and to demonstrate the solidarity of the international community to the affected host countries.
Giampaolo Silvestri, AVSI Secretary General, shared the experience of AVSI with Venezuelans in Brazil from the floor. These are his remarks:
Partnerships with the private sector allow AVSI to work towards employment of refugees, in particular with:
This is for us the only way: the multi-stakeholder approach for a migration flow that has reached unprecedented proportions, and that will remain an emergency for the coming years.
What does a multi-stakeholder approach mean, and what are its advantages?
The issue of migration is complex, and it demands that:
NGOs are necessary mediators and facilitators: when they have been working with local communities for a long time, they know and understand the actual needs of both the people that arrive and the host communities.
The intervention of public donors is essential to respond to immediate needs: if people are hungry, we must give the hungry something to eat now.
Private companies: they support job training, but also job creation. This approach helps the commitment of public donors during a crisis because it makes available new resources available. But the nature of the enterprise should always be respected: the inclusive business.
Employment is not only a response to hunger, but also the necessary condition to ensure the dignity of the person.
Conclusion: the multi-stakeholder approach must promote the person, help him/her to overcome, and exit the condition of "refugee-migrant" to be a full-fledged citizen of the world's community. The alternative is not human.