EMERGENCY RESPONSE PROGRAM
Many refugee families and individuals live in insecure and precarious conditions, putting them at high risk in times of crisis. In collaboration with the communities we support, we aim to mitigate these risks through providing flexible and targeted emergency assistance. The needs of local communities vary per season and highly depend on other external factors such as the political and economic circumstances in the host country, and we try to respond accordingly. UHfR offers the following types of support:
Nutritional: We provide grocery store vouchers so that families can purchase food and hygiene items that are most relevant for their families.
Educational: We distribute essential school supplies, such as backpacks, notebooks, pencils etc.
Gender-specific: We distribute hygiene items for women, connect domestic abuse survivors to organisations that offer specialised legal assistance, and provide material assistance for single mothers.
Household: We distribute basic household supplies such as blankets, mattresses, stoves, and radiators for heat. We offer financial aid to pay water, gas and electricity bills to support families at risk of eviction or having their services cut.
We work to directly support medical emergency cases in urgent situations, to ensure access to essential specialist treatment and medication when other health care services cannot be otherwise accessed.
In the communities we work with, there is very little financial support available, and as such we have observed a deterioration of the general health of community members due to the lack of access to healthcare facilities and preventative measures (heating, clothing, medication, and sufficient nutrition). Basic medical needs often go untreated resulting in poor health outcomes, especially for single mothers, pregnant women, infants, the elderly, and people with chronic illnesses.
We aim to fill these gaps, through responding to the urgent, as well as the long-term health care needs of the community, through facilitating access to health and welfare services to the refugee communities. In urgent cases, we work to facilitate access to specialized medical care and essential medicine. When possible, we offer financial support to cover medication, hospital bills, transportation to health facilities, or medical procedures (e.g. surgeries).
In response to the evolving needs of the refugee communities we work with – and particularly due to the destructive impact that the global pandemic and worsening economic crisis has had – UHfR is committed to a long-term strategy towards safeguarding and improving the general physical and mental health and well-being of community members. We do this by offering stipends to volunteer medical professionals from the community, like nurses, paramedics, psychologists and the like. We also aim to support the long-term mental health and well-being of the community, through facilitating access to quality Psycho-Social Support programs offered by local organisations in response to the specific needs of the community.
We rely on an extensive network of local collaborators to determine the needs of the refugee communities we support. We work directly with the communities, focusing on building relationships and recording personal testimonies. We respond to the constantly changing needs of the communities, and adjust our strategies based on the information we receive on a regular basis from our local contact persons (individuals who have taken on a leadership role to manage and increase the support for their community).
UHfR’s operational strategy:
1. Initiate communication with local refugee communities
Identifying and establishing contact with trusted individuals from the community, who are actively engaged with community support.
3. Resources & Fundraising
Focus on raising funds and other resources to cover the assessed needs through online and in-person fundraisers, grants, sponsoring memberships, partnerships and collaborations.
4. Case Management
Quick and thoughtful response to the evolving individual as well as common needs within the community. Flexibility to respond to emergency cases by adjusting our strategies and in close communication with the community.
2. Needs Assessment
Field trips and visiting contact persons in the communities for a better understanding of the situation on the ground; development of a strategic support plan; referral mapping; cooperating with other initiatives like (I)NGOs, local organisations and community centres.
CULTURE & IDENTITY
One of our goals is to support the preservation of the cultural identity of refugee communities.
At UHfR we acknowledge and believe in the importance of protecting and celebrating cultural heritage and tradition as a central part of the life and well-being of human societies.
We are committed to raising awareness about the culture, traditions and history of refugee communities as a way of sharing knowledge and reducing stigma, as well as preserving the cultural identity of forcibly displaced ethnic minorities for future generations. We do this through:
Sponsorship: Through sponsoring cultural events, UHfR assists refugee communities in maintaining and celebrating their cultural heritage and traditions which are a central part of the social life and collective well-being of all communities.
Community Center: We support community centers for refugee communities. Those are available for community meetings, cultural events and to offer support for administrative work.