Project Integrated

With the support of UNHCR MaltaProject Integrated seeks to target the integration of beneficiaries of international protection through the provision of integrated support by JRS Malta, aditus foundation and Integra foundation.

The overall goal of the project is that beneficiaries of international protection are fully integrated in Maltese society, effectively enjoy their rights, and achieve true independence and self-sufficiency. This will be achieved through: service provision (counselling, information sharing, in-depth support) to beneficiaries of protection on various levels; capacity-building of mainstream service-providers to facilitate easier access to such services; monitoring integration gaps and advocating for the development of better integration services and programmes.

People granted protection in Malta enjoy freedom of movement, access to the labour market, education and health services. Nevertheless, local settlement and integration remains problematic for many. This is due to difficulties accessing the labour market and/or securing stable employment, destitution, limited social support, as well as restrictive family reunification and citizenship opportunities. Government policies can in some cases also present obstacles to development of livelihoods and independent living arrangements.

As yet, there is no comprehensive integration policy in place in Malta, although there have been improvements in recent years as regards to access to social services and promotion of access to the regular labour market. The authorities are in principle in agreement with the need to pursue new approaches to facilitate integration, including through facilitation of settlement outside of the designated centres in Malta. It has been announced that an integration policy will be published soon. 

A second component of Project Integrated, which is financed by Istrina and will be implemented by JRS Malta in collaboration with aditus foundation, aims to expand the current service beyond integration-related issues to include also protection-related issues. This in view of the fact that obtaining protection not only protects the individual from forced return to a country where s/he will face serious harm, but also allows the individual to enjoy basic fundamental rights which are essential to be able to live with dignity.

In view of this shift, the project will broaden its current focus on beneficiaries of protection to include also asylum seekers and migrants whose asylum applications have been rejected.

In particular the project seeks to address the following needs/challenges:

  • The difficulties faced by asylum seekers and beneficiaries of protection in the community when seeking to obtain information, access protection, and avail themselves of their rights;
  • The very limited programmes and services available to facilitate integration and to enable asylum seekers ad beneficiaries of protection to achieve self-sufficiency;
  • The very real risk of poverty and social exclusion faced by migrants in a particularly vulnerable situation and the extremely limited support available to these individuals;
  • The particular hardship faced by migrants with tolerated stay or THP/N in view of the limited rights enjoyed by this category of migrants;
  • The fragmented nature of the services currently offered by NGOs in the field of legal assistance and psychosocial support, which could lead to individuals failing to achieve the support and services they require.

The project will address these challenges by:

  • Providing information, generic integration support and professional services and support [legal, educational and psychosocial] on integration and protection-related issues;
  • Seeking to better understand the factors that increase migrants’ and asylum seekers’ vulnerability to poverty and social exclusion through research into migrants’ lived experiences;
  • Advocating for improved policies and services to combat poverty and social exclusion among the migrant population.

The services provided as part of this project will be complemented by other services offered by the JRS including social work services, support to access medical care and psychological support.

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