AVRR Program of Voluntary Return
The Voluntary Return Program of IOM is for third-country nationals who wish to return to their home country.
You do not need to be an applicant of International Protection to participate in the program. If you are an applicant of international protection and your application has been rejected or you wish to withdraw from your application, the voluntary return programs of IOM can help you return to your country safely and with dignity.
The program offers assistance of 1000 Euros to those that live in the mainland of Greece and 500 Euros to those that live in the islands.
In addition to financial aid, the program offers significant support for your reintegration in your home country.
More specifically, the program will support your return and reintegration in the following ways:
- assistance to cover your first expenses after returning to your country of origin
- assistance to cover expenses of temporary accommodation/reception costs at a reception center, hostel, or hotel and/or to cover temporary accommodation
- assistance for expenses for the participation in training programs, courses, vocational training programs, programs to acquire and/or enhance his/her skills, practice internships, and so on
- assistance to find work and / or job placement
- assistance to start an independent economic activity and/or operate a small business, etc.
- assistance to facilitate your resettlement in your country of origin by covering the cost of purchasing, repairing or transporting household and / or furniture from Greece, covering the cost of repairing the residence in the country of origin, purchasing goods to meet basic subsistence needs
- assistance for the provision of individualized counseling services and support (e.g. legal aid, psychosocial support, vocational/professional orientation and so forth)
- assistance to meet your special needs in situation of vulnerability and
- assistance to organize local development activities that will contribute to your acceptance within the local community and will smoothen your reintegration
The International Organization for Migration (IOM) - Greece, taking into account the needs of third-country nationals who wish to return to their countries of origin and, - if eligible - receive in kind reintegration assistance upon their return, proposes a wide range of activities and procedures, to facilitate the return and reintegration of the beneficiaries of the Action as well as to ensure that their voluntary return will take place with safety and dignity
More specifically, the Action is funded 75% by the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund and 25% by National funds.
IOM is expected to assist in the voluntary return of 12,640 third-country nationals to their countries of origin, to provide in kind reintegration assistance to 2,400 returnees and to accommodate 2,720 assisted voluntary return applicants in the Open Centre for Applicants of Voluntary Return.
In order to support the voluntary return and reintegration of beneficiaries participating in the Action, IOM Greece provides information on the assistance available within the framework of the Action along with the relevant procedures.
Beneficiaries of the program with vulnerabilities and beneficiaries who do not have an accommodation option until the return procedure is completed and they depart from Greece may stay in the Open Center for Applicants of Voluntary Return in the Attica prefecture. This does not include unaccompanied children and victims of trafficking for whom separate structures exist in Greece.
24-72 hours prior to the beneficiaries’ departure from Greece and with respect to the COVID-19 preventive measures, a pre-embarkation check (PEC) will be conducted by the IOM physician or in an exceptional situation by a nurse under the physician’s guidance as a last-minute effort to assess migrant’s fit to travel. For migrants residing in RICs in islands and in several accommodation facilities in mainland, PEC will be conducted in coordination with the national authorities.
On the day of departure, the IOM staff will provide assistance to the beneficiaries at the airport (e.g. luggage and passport control etc.). Moreover, IOM Greece will provide the one-time cash grant foreseen in the letter of the MoMA with ref. no. 259/2021 (Annex I):
- 4,400 beneficiaries who are already registered or will register in the Action in mainland will receive a cash grant of 1,000 euro
- 3,500 beneficiaries who will register in the Action in an island will receive a cash grant of 500 euros
During the individualized reintegration counselling session, the Reintegration Counsellors will provide information on the content and modality of available reintegration support
The main types of reintegration assistance available to the Action’s beneficiaries are: (a) assistance to cover his / her first expenses after returning to the country of origin, (b) assistance to cover expenses of temporary accommodation / reception costs at a reception centre, hostel or hotel and / or to cover temporary accommodation, (c) assistance for expenses for the participation in training programs, courses, vocational training programs, programs to acquire and / or enhance his/her skills, practice internships and so on, (d) assistance to beneficiary to find work and / or job placement (e) assistance to start an independent economic activity and / or operate a small business, etc. (f) facilitating the beneficiary’s resettlement in the country of origin by covering the cost of purchasing, repairing or transporting household and / or furniture from Greece, covering the cost of repairing the residence in the country of origin, purchasing goods to meet basic subsistence needs of the national/beneficiary etc. (g) assistance for the provision of individualized counselling services and support (e.g. legal aid, psychosocial support, vocational/professional orientation and so forth), (h) assistance to meet the special needs of beneficiaries in situation of vulnerability and (i) assistance to organize local development activities that will contribute to the acceptance of the returnee within the local community and will smoothen his/her reintegration. The reintegration assistance can be utilized by the beneficiaries either for one of the above categories or combined when necessary.
The duration of the Action will be from 1 September 2019 to 30 June 2022.
The project “Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration of Migrants in situations of vulnerability” is being implemented under the programme “Asylum and Migration” of the EEA Grants by IOM. Through the project, IOM seeks to provide AVRR assistance to migrants in situations of vulnerability, expressing the will to return to their country of origin and to contribute to their sustainable reintegration.
- beneficiaries with health needs,
- UMC and/or separated children,
- elderly persons (+65),
- victims of trafficking,
- pregnant women,
- and beneficiaries with other types of vulnerabilities
Information for the program can be found here