Migrants having access to essential services
- New Registration and Temporary Accommodation Centre for Migrants in Albania
Kapshtica, October 29, 2019: Having the rights of migrants at the heart of its work, IOM Albania and the Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) are supporting migrants’ access to shelter, medical support, hygiene and other essential services by establishing a centre for Registration and Temporary Accommodation of irregular migrants. The centre was opened on October 29, 2019 in Kapshtica, Albania, close to the Border Crossing Point with Greece.
The facility will be able to host 60 people and comprises 17 fully equipped units. One is for registration, 10 for accommodation, two sanitary blocks (one for men and one for women), two bathrooms, a kitchen and a laundry unit. The registration room includes four fully equipped work posts. All the accommodation containers are equipped with beds, mattresses, bed-sheets, pillows, quilts and blankets. Each bathroom and sanitary container have five toilets plus one more for migrants with disabilities. All containers are equipped with fire extinguishers and two fire hydrants are installed at the centre. In addition, two minivans have been provided by IOM in order to facilitate the transfer of migrants to and from the centre for any additional services needed.
The centre was established by IOM - the UN Migration Agency, under the project “Improving reception capacities and access to services for migrants and refugees entering Albania through Kapshtica, Korça”, in partnership with the Ministry of Interior and with the financial support from the Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) through the Migrant and Refugee Fund (MRF).
“This centre is an example of IOM’s commitment. The main objective here is to ensure that migrants and refugees receive the support and services they need,” stated Ms. Argentina Szabados, IOM Regional Director for Eastern Europe, South-Eastern Europe and Central Asia, at the inauguration of the centre. “The centre guarantees that people on the move are treated with dignity. It ensures access to shelter, medical support, and safety.”
“Projects like this one are of crucial importance. They help us do a better job, while help Albania to achieve higher standards on migration governance, in its European aspirations. Migrants rights have always been and continue to be at the core of the Government of Albania efforts on migration governance, embedded also in the recently approved National Strategy on Migration”, said Ms. Rovena Voda, Deputy Minister of Interior of Albania
“In October 2015, at the height of the refugee crisis, the CEB established a €28-million Migrant and Refugee Fund (MRF) to support its member countries in accommodating and/ or integrating migrants and refugees who arrive on their territories. Twenty-two CEB member countries and the European Investment Bank (EIB) have contributed to the MRF, alongside the CEB, with Germany, France, and Italy at the forefront. €22 million have been allocated to projects located along the Balkan route, in line with the Bank’s mandate to support the most vulnerable and in need of financial resources. This is one of these projects and one of many that we worked with IOM. We are pleased to see today that the MRF delivers on its promise,” said Stephan Sellen, Deputy Director with the Council of Europe Development Bank.
Through this project, the IOM will also provide capacity building activities to the Border and Migration Police officers on management of migration flows in line with relevant European and international standards. The trainings will focus on humanitarian border management, fundamental rights of migrants, cultural orientation, identification, and referral of vulnerable migrants in mixed migration flows, in particular, migrant children, single parents with children, the elderly, migrants with medical conditions, etc.
At the national level, the project is contributing to Albania’s efforts to achieve orderly, safe, and responsible migration and mobility of people, through implementation of planned and well-managed migration policies.