At the Global Refugee Forum, States and other stakeholders submitted pledges to foster inclusive economic growth for refugees and host communities through decent work, job creation and entrepreneurship programmes. Of the total of 140 pledges submitted on Jobs and Livelihoods, 40 are reported as in progress, in planning, or already fulfilled. This is despite significant setbacks for many as a result of the socio-economic impacts of COVID-19.
Read more to discover progress on jobs and livelihoods
Of the 28 policy pledges on inclusion into national labour markets, notable progress has been made:
- In Mexico, where COMAR – the refugee commission – and UNHCR collaborate on a relocation programme for 10,000 refugees and asylum seekers. The relocated receive stable employment, and access to housing and health services.
- In Malawi, refugees have been included into the “Malawi Growth and Development Strategy III”, received access to land and benefitted from camp decongestion.
- In Zambia, refugees have been included in the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP). In Rwanda, refugees have been included in national agricultural development programmes (including tea plantations) with the generous financial support of Denmark.
- Meanwhile, Ethiopia, has issued 2,800 residence permits, with the plan to expand to 7,600 in 2021. This allows refugees to work and live outside camps.
On economic development by non-state actors (56 pledges), significant developments have also been made:
- UNDP is bringing digitally enabled livelihoods to refugees in 22 countries.
- The Poverty Alleviation Coalition reports to have obtained 12 per cent of the funding needed to implement self-reliance programmes with 160,000 extremely poor households across 26 countries.
Finally, pledges from the private sector (22 pledges) have progressed despite COVID-19 taking a particularly hard toll on some companies:
- The TENT Partnership for Refugees reports to be progressing towards their pledge of employment for 12,500 refugees, with, for example, Woolworths hiring 150 refugees in their supermarkets.
- Good progress has been made on the International Chamber of Commerce’s pledge to support their 45 million-member companies in hiring refugees. For example, the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KNCCI) signed an MoU with UNHCR to support the hiring of refugees.