Vulnerable refugees in Liège: transitioning to independence

Caritas International Belgium Vulnerable refugees in Liège: transitioning to independence

In the transition housing recognized refugees with vulnerabilities can count on support in their transition to independent living after their stay in a collective reception center. - Pauline Willot

In the transition housing recognized refugees with vulnerabilities can count on support in their transition to independent living after their stay in a collective reception center. - Pauline Willot

29/08/2020

Title:

Transition to independence for recognized refugees with vulnerabilities (TVU Liège)

Public:

Applicants for international protection who have received a residence permit and need to leave the reception centers, but are not yet able to live fully independently due to specific vulnerabilities (disabilities, significant medical ailments, psychosocial difficulties, illiteracy, etc.).

Objectives:

Facilitate the transition to independence and start life in Belgium for refugees in vulnerable groups who have received a residence permit.

Location:

Liège (also Brussels and Antwerp)

Duration:

Since 2016

HOUSING: AN IMPORTANT, BUT DIFFICULT STEP TOWARDS INDEPENDENCE

Refugees who have received a positive decision on their application for international protection (asylum) only have two months to leave their reception center, find housing, and navigate the administrative process that gives them access to social rights in Belgium. Often, they are confronted with numerous obstacles, such as trouble accessing private housing due to discrimination, the language barrier, not knowing how the process or institutions works, etc.

This transition is even more difficult for refugees who are “vulnerable” (people with disabilities, serious medical ailments, psychosocial difficulties, illiteracy, etc.) because of the additional obstacles they have to overcome.

>>ALSO READ: Housing after COVID-19: Refugees search for accommodation 

Caritas wishes to maximize the chances of success of the transition to independence through this project supported by Fedasil, as a part of their transition program for people no longer eligible for reception. Refugees with vulnerabilities benefit from adapted individual housing and social support.

This support is a part of the activities of the Integration team, which has seven years of experience supporting vulnerable refugees. The people that Caritas supports are selected based on their level of vulnerability.

MORE THAN A ROOF: SUPPORT AND CARE FOR THE MOST VULNERABLE

An expert team of counselors and intercultural staff is ready to welcome people with specific vulnerabilities into individual housing. They respond to requests for help and offer support in planning for a future in Belgium. “From the first day, we were welcomed with open arms in Mechelen. Here, our medical follow-up was quick. The inclusion process was closely supported. Also, the team helped us make appointments and followed the processes of our case. We are very grateful for this,” declares Ararat and Liana, two former residents of the transition housing managed by Caritas.

>> ALSO READ: Vulnerable refugees: the last stop before living independently 

Concretely, this project aims to maximize the chances of a successful transition to living independently by offering:

  • Accommodation in individual housing in order to allow for the independent management of one’s housing, budget, and daily life. These accommodations are offered in three major cities of the country: Brussels, Antwerp, and Liège. The accommodation period is transitional and is no longer than six months.
  • Adapted social support aimed at addressing specific needs, reinforcing skills, knowledge, and social capital, as well as building a professional and community network around the individual.
  • Support with searching for permanent housing in the private market and for understanding their social rights.

Help us

Donate

Donations of € 40 or more on an annual basis are tax-deductible. You can get back up to 45% of your gift.

A question? Contact us