Integration plays a key role in supporting the existence of thriving, resilient, diverse and inclusive communities.
IOM in the UK work closely with a range of partners to help migrants and refugees to better integrate into their new communities, as well as the receiving communities to recognise and facilitate the positive contributions that the newcomers can make.
Our partners are private sector employers and organisations, local authorities, civil society organisations, which we support with training, workshops, advisory services, and other capacity-building initiatives, drawing on a range of integration models and best practices gained through our expertise in the UK as well as our international presence in over 100 countries.
Moving from a vulnerable situation in a country of first asylum to another country you have never seen before can be daunting. To better prepare refugees for what to expect in the UK, IOM offers UK Pre-Departure Cultural Orientation (UKCO) to adults and children resettling in the UK.
IOM's cultural orientation provides participants with some initial information about life in the UK and their journey to get here, to support them developing the skills, attitudes, and knowledge needed to adjust and integrate in their new communities.
Usually it takes place shortly prior to their departure, and covers key topics such as a general introduction to the UK (climate and weather, the political system, demographics), post-arrival services, employment, housing, education in the UK, the law, health systems, British values and cultural adaptation.
Refugee Information Sessions
Since 2016, IOM has therefore been delivering Information Sessions on different country profiles to local authorities and receiving communities across the UK. By exploring refugees’ perspectives, experiences and needs, host communities can increase their understanding and adapt their support to be even more effective by earning the buy-in of those they seek to assist. This may help reduce the adjustment period for beneficiaries and support strong integration services. IOM’s Cross-Cultural Facilitators are experts who have delivered sessions to thousands of participants in all twelve regions of the UK.
IOM UK delivers Refugee Information Sessions to local authorities and receiving communities, including private sector organisations and employers, across the UK. Sessions are adapted to different audiences, including those working in the councils, social support, health, police and emergency services, education, employment support, volunteering and community/faith groups.
In the UK, IOM currently offers the following Information Sessions (although more may be available upon request):
- Syrian Arab Republic
- Democratic Republic of Congo
Refugee Information Sessions are CPD-certified, and we can tailor information sessions to suit individual needs, including developing new sessions for requested nationalities or in specific sectors.
We are constantly working on adding more nationalities to our existing information sessions. More information on the sessions content, nationalities and communities covered can be found here.
These IOM sessions can be incorporated into partners existing training.
Get in touch with the team: infosessionsUK@iom.int
Displaced Talent for Europe (DT4E) is a three-year pilot project (December 2021 – December 2024) funded by the European Union (EU) that aims to facilitate and strengthen labour mobility schemes to match displaced talent in Jordan and Lebanon with employers in Belgium, Ireland, Portugal and the UK. Together with our partners at Talent Beyond Boundaries, Fedasil, Alto Comissariado para as Migrações and Fragomen, the project will set the foundations for complementary pathways that will enable people in need of protection and their families to sustainably integrate into the labour market.
The project aims to:
- Increase national support for complementary pathways for displaced talent through strengthened partnerships and policy dialogue.
- Engage employers in four European countries to address skills shortages through displaced talent mobility schemes.
- Support minimum 250 displaced talents and their families throughout the process, with tailored pre-departure and post-arrival integration assistance.
- Create a community of practice to promote the exchange of knowledge and practices on complementary pathways across Europe.
More information on DT4E are available here.
Labour Market Integration
Ensuring migrants and refugees can contribute economically and socially to their host communities is key to the future well-being, prosperity and cohesion of communities. Yet there can be barriers to integration such as an inability to transfer qualifications, differences in cultural values, insufficient language skills, and a mismatch between experience and opportunities.
IOM aims to reduce these barriers by analysing employer and migrant needs, creating opportunities for migrants and developing partnerships for increased employer and migrant engagement.
If you’re interested in finding out more about IOM UK’s Labour Market Integration work please contact us on iomukLMI@iom.int