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|2021 planning figures|
|30,000||IDPs and 50,000 Venezuelans will be provided with civil status documentation|
|30,000||Venezuelan applicants will be provided with information on government status determination procedures|
|10,000||IDPs and 150,000 Venezuelans will receive legal assistance|
|9,000||adolescents (6,000 IDPs and 3,000 Venezuelans) will participate in youth programmes|
|15||projects supporting livelihood capacities of IDPs will be defined and implemented|
|2019 year-end figures|
|250,000||Colombian returnees, IDPs and members of vulnerable host communities received civil registration or identity documents issued by the Government with the support of UNHCR|
|112,000||people of concern received legal assistance|
|14,400||Venezuelans and Colombian returnees received shelter assistance|
|4,200||people of concern were trained on opportunities to access the labor market|
|2,500||newly displaced individuals received essential relief items and other humanitarian assistance to complement gaps in Government response capacity|
|1,400||families, including some 90 Colombian returnee households, received cash transfers or vouchers to cover essential needs such as domestic items or rental accommodation|
People of Concern
Operational environmentUNHCR works in Colombia to ensure protection and assistance to around 1.7 million refugees and migrants from Venezuela; 8.1 million IDPs and over 500,000 Colombian returnees from Venezuela. Despite Colombia’s historic peace agreement, ongoing violence and displacement compounded by the grave impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country are heightening protection risks and putting increasing strain on already overwhelmed State capacities.
Outflows from the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela are expected to increase in 2021, especially with the easing of COVID-19-related border restrictions. Although it is yet unclear when official borders will reopen, Venezuelans continue to exit their country via unofficial border points. Meanwhile, nearly 20,000 Colombians were newly displaced in 2020 alone, a situation which continued alongside confinement in several regions, creating new humanitarian needs.
Cooperation with the Government and international actors will remain essential in 2021 to enhance comprehensive protection responses for various populations of concern and their host communities. Given the significant negative impact of the pandemic on the ability of people of concern to meet their basic needs and pursue self-reliance opportunities (as a result of long-lasting quarantine, rising xenophobia, dwindling employment opportunities and overall economic downturn), the implementation of life-saving assistance alongside strategies that enhance self-reliance will remain crucial.
In the context of humanitarian response to internal displacement, UNHCR will continue to co-lead the protection cluster with the Norwegian Refugee Council and the inter-agency mixed migration group with IOM. UNHCR will further support the new United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework, signed in early 2020, which will include the response to mixed movements from the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela as one of its main pillars.
Alliances with the private sector will be strengthened in 2021, particularly to combat xenophobia, ensure labour insertion and socioeconomic integration for Venezuelans refugees and migrants and for Colombian returnees, and advance durable solutions for IDPs.
Key prioritiesIn 2021, under the Venezuela Situation response, UNHCR will continue to focus on:
- Ensuring Venezuelans can access assistance and protection and that persons at heightened risk are identified and receive targeted support, including cash assistance and shelter.
- Supporting the Colombian Government to rehabilitate, construct and equip public infrastructure, adapt services to operate effectively and increase absorption capacity in key sectors such as health and education.
- Establishing and implementing tools, such as call centres and information and orientation points, to enable all people of concern to obtain information on rights and services, and to access counselling and legal aid.
- Monitoring, analyzing and reporting on protection risks faced by Venezuelans (particularly through an age, gender and diversity approach), to inform advocacy and the design of UNHCR’s interventions and those of partners.
- Supporting the Colombian Government to register and profile Venezuelans as well as to implement initiatives that enable Venezuelans to regularize their stay, access documentation and public services and achieve economic integration.
- Advocating and providing technical assistance to enhance the asylum system and draft human mobility law, particularly with respect to its provisions on international protection.
- Leading, with IOM, inter-agency coordination arrangements for analysis, response and coordination with local and national authorities.
- Reinforcing the capacity of local and national institutions and partners in the areas of child protection and the prevention and response to gender-based violence, including through a strengthened Safe Spaces Network.
- Preventing and addressing xenophobia towards the Venezuelan population through community engagement, public information campaigns and peaceful coexistence initiatives.
In 2021, under the IDP response, UNHCR will continue to:
- Promote solutions to internal displacement, facilitating the local integration of IDPs with the legalization of informal settlements in urban areas.
- Monitor, analyse and report on protection risks in areas prone to violence and expand support for local and national institutions to prevent and respond to new displacements.
- Promote and facilitate the participation of communities in decision-making and mechanisms to prevent, respond to and find solutions to internal displacement.
- Support transitional justice mechanisms created under the Peace Agreement to ensure the visibility of forced displacement and the inclusion of IDPs in peacebuilding strategies.