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How we do resettlement

How we do resettlement

The resettlement of refugees is a collaborative venture that requires the participation of many actors. We work closely with States, NGOs, the International Organization for Migration (IOM), civil society and receiving communities as well as refugees themselves.
UNHCR UN Refugee Agency - How we do resettlement - ALT text: Four young girls enjoy chatting to each other while standing outside their classroom at the Duque de Caxias Municipal School in the Glicerio neighborhood of downtown Sao Paulo in Brazil.
This joint responsibility is reflected in the Global Compact on Refugees (GCR) and through the Consultations on Resettlement and Complementary Pathways (CRCP) infrastructure, which aim to promote solutions, international solidarity and more predictable, equitable responsibility-sharing.

Resettlement handbook

The UNHCR Resettlement Handbook offers resettlement management and policy guidance to UNHCR staff including protection considerations related to identification for resettlement, anti-fraud measures, best interest procedures for unaccompanied and separated children and country considerations for resettlement referrals. The UNHCR Resettlement Handbook also serves as a key reference tool on global resettlement policy and practice for both traditional and emerging resettlement states as well as for NGOs involved in resettlement activities.

Projected Global Resettlement Needs (PGRN)

The PGRN contains details of the protection environment and refugee profiles in need of resettlement in UNHCR operations globally and is used to raise awareness and advocate for those refugee populations who are most at risk and which are recommended for resettlement by UNHCR. It serves as the primary reference document for dialogue on resettlement needs, priorities, likely gaps and challenges in programme delivery, allowing informed decisions on quota and resource allocations.

Priority Situations Core Group

One way in which States, UNHCR, IOM and other actors may work together on the operational coordination of resettlement programs, advocacy and strategic direction is through a Core Group.
The Priority Situations Core Group (PSCG) – currently co-chaired by the Governments of Ireland and Sweden – held its inaugural meeting on 13 September 2019 in Brussels. The PSCG has since met on a regular basis with the following objectives, outlined in a Joint Statement to the Global Refugee Forum:

  • Expanding opportunities for resettlement, family reunification and complementary pathways for the admission of refugees to third countries
  • Promoting positive outcomes through collaboration, coordination and dialogue to share knowledge and technical expertise
  • Building sustainability and long-term support for resettlement programs

The current focus of the PSCG includes the Syria situation and the Central Mediterranean situation. Other regional or situational priorities may arise in future.

Sustainable Resettlement and Complementary Pathways Initiative (CRISP)

The CRISP initiative is a crucial tool to implement the actions identified under the strategy. It is a UNHCR-IOM led initiative that aims to support States and key stakeholders to establish, expand or renew resettlement programmes and advance complementary pathways of admission. The CRISP provides targeted capacity building in partnership with diverse actors, including Champion States, to achieve quality, scalable and sustainable programmes.

Resettlement Deployment Scheme

The Deployment Scheme offers professionals the chance to work in a UNHCR operation, fully integrated within a UNHCR team, and to help boost UNHCR’s capacity to respond to the resettlement needs of refugees. Under the Deployment Scheme, each deployment partner is responsible for hiring caseworkers (referred to as “Deployees”) who support UNHCR operations in submitting refugees for resettlement.

The number of Deployees has rapidly grown over the past years as a result of the increasing resettlement needs of refugees. In 2020, approximately 130 Deployees were deployed to more than 40 different country operations, supporting UNHCR’s resettlement activities across the globe. While the majority of Deployees are involved in resettlement casework, a number of deployments are focused on child protection, to assist UNHCR operations in making best interest assessments and determinations for unaccompanied and separated refugee children, as well as refugee status determination, registration and other protect-related functions that support resettlement identification and submissions, in addition to a growing number of complementary pathways and family reunification deployments.

For more information about the UNHCR Resettlement Deployment Scheme and how to apply to become a Deployee, please visit the websites of UNHCR’s resettlement deployment partners: