Expanding Third Country Solutions

Expanding Third Country Solutions

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The Global Compact on Refugees (GCR) promotes responsibility-sharing with host countries by focusing on solutions, including by expanding third country solutions which include resettlement and complementary pathways. Here you will find information on how UNHCR and partners work to turn this element of the Compact into action. Refugee situations continue to increase in scope, scale and complexity. Most refugees (85 per cent) are hosted in low- and middle-income countries. Despite the generosity of host countries and donors, there is an urgent need to share the responsibility for hosting and supporting the growing number of refugees more equitably.

Third Country Solutions for Refugees: Roadmap 2030

The GCR mandated the development of the Three-Year Strategy (2019-2021) on Resettlement and Complementary Pathways (the Strategy), as a key vehicle to increase resettlement spaces, expand the number of resettlement countries, and improve the availability and predictability of complementary pathways and access to family reunifications for refugees. The Strategy was developed through extensive multi-stakeholder consultations with states, national and international non-governmental organizations (NGOs), civil society, private sector actors, academia, faith-based actors, refugees, and other UN agencies and outlined a long term-year plan for the systematic expansion of third-country solutions.

The Third Country Solutions for Refugees: Roadmap 2030 (the Roadmap) expands on the Strategy's objectives and reaffirms its long-term goals, by laying out revised enabling actions, key indicators to monitor progress, as well as short and medium-term activities toward achieving the vision to have three million refugees accessing resettlement, complementary pathways and family reunification by 2030. The Roadmap also takes into account the significant effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and aligns with the Global Refugee Forum (GRF) cycle.

The Roadmap's goals are to:

  1. Grow Resettlement;
  2. Advance Complementary Pathways and Family Reunification;
  3. Build the Foundation.

How to contribute

In line with the multi-stakeholder and whole-of-society approach needed to achieve the Roadmap goals below are some examples of the types of contributions that different stakeholders can make:

  • Civil society at the international, regional, national and local levels (including NGOs, faith-based organizations, refugees in receiving countries, diaspora and citizens): Bring refugees and local communities together through sponsorship models, volunteerism, mentorship programs and inter-faith and intercultural events. Good practice: Student sponsorship programme in Canada
  • Governments in receiving countries: Support mechanisms and approaches for meaningful refugee participation. Good practice: Dutch professionals & former resettled refugees cooperate to help with pre-departure orientation training
  • Governments in receiving countries: Expand the size of resettlement programmes and/or establish new ones that are protection-centred, predictable, responsive and include multi-year commitments.
  • Academic and research institutions: Generate, translate and disseminate evidence to inform policies and programmes and support practitioners. Good practice: Protected entry – a safe alternative pathway
  • Individuals and their communities in receiving countries: sponsor a family through community sponsorship. Community sponsorship allows groups of individuals to directly support refugees and other persons in need of international protection admitted under resettlement or complementary pathways in their reception and integration. Several countries have developed community sponsorship programmes through which groups of individuals commit to providing practical, emotional and material support. Find out more about community sponsorship.

If you are interested in making a pledge related to complementary pathways, please consult the pledging guidance and consider joining one of the Global Refugee Forum 2023 multistakeholder pledges.