Construction, coordination and management of temporary accommodation centres
The project in brief
Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD), Turkey
2011 - 2018
The legal authority regarding coordination and management of the temporary accommodation centres was transferred to the Turkish Ministry of Interior Directorate General for Migration Management in March 2018.
Turkey responded to protection and humanitarian needs of refugees such as food, water, sanitation and hygiene, shelter, health, education.
The Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD) has been the responsible body for temporary accomodation centres, with the help of relevant ministries, non-governmental organizations, local authorities and Governorates. International institutions were also somewhat involved in providing these services.
The aim was to provide shelter and meet the other basic needs of Syrian refugees who left their country and to support the integration process of Syrian refugees, enabling them to live in peace and dignity.
Almost all costs were provided by AFAD. AFAD has been acting under the “Open-Door Policy” and "leave no one behind” principles while the humanitarian crisis escalated. When the temporary accommodation centres were set up, AFAD depended on its own budget and resources. Containers were supplied and technical materials were mostly rented.
- Provincial directorates of AFAD
- Governorates of the concerned provinces
- Ministry of Health
- Ministry of National Education
- Ministry of Family, Labour and Social Services
- Non-governmental organizations (e.g. Turkish Red Crescent)
- Local authorities
- UN agencies (UNHCR, UNDP, WFP, UNICEF)
Challenges and how they were overcome
The biggest challenge faced during this project was implementing it alone, especially during the first stages.
However, national and international partners eventually contributed to the project, thereby ensuring burden sharing.
Lack of experience was another challenge. The setting-up of big temporary accommodation centres had never been done in Turkey before.
AFAD tried overcome the challenges through its own resources and efforts. In order to facilitate assistance programs, AFAD developed an award-winning software program, called “AFKEN Project”, that provides asylum seekers with best practices after emergencies. The software programme includes information about the temporary accommodation centres (such as capacity, geographical location, age, gender and names of the asylum seekers living there).
Results of the Good Practice
- Protection and shelter was provided to more than 300,000 asylum seekers and refugees at the temporary accommodation centers.
- Most of the temporary accommodation centers have been closed through a planned transition. Today, seven temporary accommodation centres are active. The rest have either been closed down or transferred to AFAD Provincial Directorates.
- Refugee arrivals are unpredictable, and any country may face it at any time. It’s also worth noting that Turkey, and AFAD in particular, has gained considerable knowledge and experience on migration issues. This expertise is offered to relevant countries that are willing to learn more about how to cope with such population movements. Colombian officials have paid a visit to Turkey in this respect.
Serra Diptaş, Head of Foreign Affairs Working Group, Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD)
Sezin Tuna, Expert, Foreing Affairs Working Group, Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD)