Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration (AVRR)

Since 1984, Voluntary Return has been funded by the Belgian Ministry for Social Integration. Later on, the funding was provided by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs/Interior via Fedasil.

This voluntary return programme is conducted in close cooperation with governmental institutions, civil society and migrant communities, constituting an example of multi-level approach to voluntary return and creating a comprehensive migration management system for the benefit of all parties involved. Working together within the Voluntary Return framework, IOM, its counterparts, and its partners are able to offer a more humane return option in full respect of the human rights and dignity of migrants.

To perform the necessary voluntary return activities and ensure the possibility of migrants to easily access the programme at each stage of their stay in Belgium, IOM has developed an extensive network of partners covering the whole territory of Belgium. The voluntary return network consists of a combination of non-governmental organisations (NGOs), local authorities (some cities and communes), governmental structures for reception of asylum seekers such as Fedasil and the Red Cross reception centres (Flemish Red Cross, French-speaking Red Cross), migrant associations and Immigration Office.

Migrants residing in Local Reception Inititatives can access the voluntary return programme via Fedasil or by referring themselves to a voluntary return partner of their choice. This provides effective services which are tailored to the different needs of the migrants in order to ensure that each potential beneficiary can choose the most suitable way to access the voluntary return programme.

IOM's Voluntary Return network of partners is divided in two categories: