On 26 and 27 October, the 2021 AGD PA was finalized with a seminar presenting the results of the participatory assessment as a basis for planning of programmes, projects and activities for the protection and integration of refugees in the next year. The participatory assessment was focused on the needs related to the protection and integration of beneficiaries of international protection and the new solutions and developments provided at the local level, such as the implemented integration agreements with local authorities, the opening of an information and service centre for third country nationals in Sofia. Challenges for beneficiaries of international protection, such as access to financial services, were also highlighted. The final part of the 2021 AGD PA provided an opportunity to present already existing and implemented alternatives to migration detention, their regime and application, and also highlighted the importance of cooperation with refugee-led organisations and structures such as the Refugee Advisory Board.

 

UNHCR, the United Nations Refugee Agency,  implements the Age, Gender and Diversity Participatory Assessment in collaboration with NGOs partners as a mechanism for programme planning as well as for accountability to refugees and people of concern. In Bulgaria, the AGD PA covers asylum-seekers and refugees accommodated in the registration and reception centres of the State Agency for Refugees, SCTAFs, municipalities and NGOs centres. The Bulgarian Council on Refugees and Migrants actively supported and participated in the participatory assessment as a source of guidance for advocacy and participation of refugees in decision-making processes that affect them.