Help Protect Asylum Seekers

by International Rescue Committee
Help Protect Asylum Seekers
Help Protect Asylum Seekers
Help Protect Asylum Seekers
Help Protect Asylum Seekers
Help Protect Asylum Seekers
Help Protect Asylum Seekers

Project Report | Aug 4, 2021
Your Impact: Helping Protect Asylum Seekers

By Sophie O'Gorman | Officer, Editorial Services

Asylum seekers &  friends are reunited in the U.S.
Asylum seekers & friends are reunited in the U.S.

Your Impact: Helping Protect Asylum Seekers

As the humanitarian crisis in northern Central America – El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala – grows, it continues to force thousands of people to flee for safety in neighboring countries and the United States.

Currently, IRC response teams in Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador are expanding and scaling-up programs to deliver services and humanitarian assistance to refugees, asylum seekers, and returnees.

The IRC’s response includes capacity-building support for local partners to increase and improve the availability and quality of services in northern Central America, in northern and southern Mexico border towns, and in Mexico City. Programing includes prevention and protection for survivors of gender-based violence – primarily women, girls and the LGBTQI+ community; economic recovery and development; mental health and psychosocial support; child protection; cultural orientation; prevention and mitigation of case management; and access to critical information through dynamic information and moderation platforms.

In the U.S., the IRC has served thousands of individuals, children, and families seeking asylum and protection before, during, and after the arrival of many immigrants, including asylum seekers, at the U.S.-Mexico border.

The IRC recently released a report with policy recommendations for the current U.S. administration to address the most urgent drivers of migration from the region, which you can read below.

IRC Policy Recommendations to Help Communities in Crisis

The IRC recommends the following steps to meaningfully address the humanitarian crisis – of which migration is the last resort:

1. Invest in humanitarian assistance in the region

  • Provide humanitarian cash support: to satisfy immediate needs with additional support to help rebuild lives to prevent future migration.
  • Develop a robust shelter system: Specialized and family shelters are lacking in El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala.
  • Improve access to information: Continuous collaboration with trusted organizations to reach and communicate with populations of concern.
  • Fund case management: Support services and access to resources are necessary within countries of origin, regional countries, and the U.S., while asylum seekers await the adjudication of their claim.

2. Support opportunities for people to find safety in their communities of first refuge

  • Money, legal and psychosocial support are among the priority needs for internally displaced people.
  • Access to reliable and timely information is key to helping people assess their options and make the best decisions for themselves.

3. Support returnees to reestablish their lives in their countries of origin

  • Those returning to their countries of origin do so with new skills, fresh perspectives, and a proven track record of being innovative and risk-taking. They represent a unique and valuable workforce.
  • Returnees need help understanding the systems, accessing resources, protection, and psychosocial support.

4. Build protection capacity and alternative pathways in the region

  • The U.S. government should work with local partners and NGOs to strengthen protection capacity and uphold the right to seek asylum in alignment with international law.
  • With protection forward support from organizations, the government can work with NGOs to receive direct referrals for vulnerable populations, such as LGBTQI+ asylum seekers.
  • Significantly increasing in-country resettlement and ensuring timely regional refugee processing will serve to provide protection from the existing risks of violence, trafficking, and life-threatening migration journeys.

5. Assist the leading root drivers of migration

  • Assist in breaking the cycle of chronic violence: Actions can include judicial and police reforms to eliminate a culture of impunity; fostering Early Childhood Development; preventing violence with behavioral change management processes; and developing multi-dimensional community-based violence prevention programs, including prenatal and maternal health interventions.
  • Utilize a trauma informed approach and account for wrap-around services for survivors of violence: People who have lived in gang-controlled communities will likely need additional support to obtain employment and be successful in a professional environment. Mental health and psychosocial support are necessary for individuals who have experienced trauma. Trauma informed care must account for access not only to support services but also to justice.
  • Support regional community leadership in addressing the impacts of climate change: Investments must be made to assist local community leaders in making societal and structural changes in their communities.

Thank you for your support and for continuing to stand with asylum seekers and refugees. Together, we can make a difference and save thousands of lives.

Asylum seekers &  friends are reunited in the U.S.
Asylum seekers & friends are reunited in the U.S.
Children seek safety in El Salvador
Children seek safety in El Salvador
Children seek safety in El Salvador
Children seek safety in El Salvador
Reynaldo returned to El Salvador via IRC's support
Reynaldo returned to El Salvador via IRC's support
Reynaldo returned to El Salvador via IRC's support
Reynaldo returned to El Salvador via IRC's support
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Organization Information

International Rescue Committee

Location: New York, NY - USA
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @RESCUEorg
Project Leader:
Alix Samuel
New York , NY United States

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