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The Long Tail of Afghan Relocation and Resettlement: Achievements, Obstacles, and Opportunities

April 12, 2022

The Evacuate Our Allies (EOA) Coalition was formed in the wake of President Biden's announcement of the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan in April 2021. Its mission is two-fold: to ensure the rapid relocation and rescue of vulnerable Afghans who are at risk of persecution from the Taliban, and to ensure a prompt and dignified resettlement in the United States. Its focus includes, but is not limited to, supporting those eligible for the Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) program.In addition to its legislative efforts, the EOA Coalition also serves as the primary engagement vehicle for the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) Unified Coordination Group (UCG) to work with civil society through Operation Allies Welcome. Through its five main liaison working groups, the coalition has hosted over 20 engagements with dozens of experts and officials representing over 12 federal agencies since September 2021 and has presented hundreds of policy and process recommendations to more humanely, efficiently, and generously support newly arrived Afghans and those that remain abroad in need of protection. This report is a compilation of feedback collected from Afghan American community leaders, veterans groups, on-the-ground experts, and liaison working groups: The report focuses on areas of advancement and achievement in our partnership with the UCG and federal agencies, identifies challenges that prevent successful relocation and resettlement, and presents recommendations for policy changes that should be prioritized as Operation Allies Welcome enters its next phase.

Funding to Meet Changing Realities: LGBTI Organisations on the State of Funding in Europe and Central Asia

January 11, 2022

ILGA-Europe continues our needs assessment work in partnership with Strength in Numbers to make a case to both better align and increase funding for the work of LGBTI organisations in Europe and Central Asia.The first funding needs assessment was done in 2017 with the intention to shine a light on the activities undertaken by LGBTI organisations, particularly those that are underfunded compared to the importance that organisations give to them. The 2021 needs assessment continues this work, with additional intentions to detect changes in the funding landscape, as well as collect additional data about the lived realities of LGBTI activists and organisations operating in the context of COVID-19, and in many countries, anti-LGBTI and/or anti-gender rhetoric, threats and attacks. Ultimately, ILGA-Europe monitors the funding landscape with an eye to moving towards sustainability for LGBTI organisations, ensuring LGBTI people on the ground can access the services they need and are free from discrimination.Where sufficient data are available, it highlights disparities between regions, so donors and activists can be aware of gaps in resources identified by LGBTI activists. ILGA-Europe would like to see the report used as a tool to continue conversations between donors and movements to increase the funding available and align the priorities of donors with the needs and opportunities experienced by LGBTI movements. The report is also intended to reach LGBTI organisations, including ILGA-Europe members, with a view to enhancing our collective understanding of how funding can support the work of our movements.

Fulfilling America’s Promise: Options to Make U.S. Humanitarian Protection Pathways Viable for At-Risk Afghans

November 9, 2021

In this report, the International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP), InterAction, and Human Rights First lay out several options available to the Biden Administration to provide at-risk Afghans viable humanitarian pathways out of Afghanistan and third countries and into the U.S.

Afghanistan’s Rising Civilian Death Toll Due to Airstrikes, 2017-2020

December 7, 2020

When the United States tightens its rules of engagement and restricts air strikes where civilians are at risk, civilian casualties tend to go down; when it loosens those restrictions, civilians are injured and killed in greater numbers. In 2017 the Pentagon relaxed its rules of engagement for airstrikes and escalated the air war in Afghanistan. The aim was to gain leverage at the bargaining table. From 2017 through 2019, civilian deaths due to U.S.and allied forces' airstrikes in Afghanistan dramatically increased.

The Displacement Continuum: The Relationship Between Internal Displacement and Cross-border Movement in Seven Countries

June 1, 2020

The twentieth of June is World Refugee Day, dedicated to raising awareness of the situation of refugees. There are nearly twice as many internally displaced people (IDPs) as there are refugees, but there is no International Day of Internal Displacement.To bring attention to the invisible majority of displaced people, the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC) is investigating the relationship between internal displacement and cross-border movement. Based on primary research conducted with refugees, returning refugees and IDPs from Afghanistan, Colombia, Iraq, Myanmar, Nigeria, South Sudan and Yemen, we arrive at the following key findings:Cross-border movements are often a symptom of the failure to protect and assist IDPs in their country of origin. More than half of the refugees and returning refugees surveyed were internally displaced before leaving their country of origin. Many suffered multiple internal displacements and were unable to find safety in their country of origin.Restrictive migration policies combine with the high cost of irregular migration to limit opportunities for IDPs seeking refuge abroad. Instead, IDPs are exposed to repeated incidents of internal displacement. Nearly 47 per cent of IDPs surveyed were displaced multiple times. Border closures resulting from COVID-19 act as a further barrier to international protection.Difficult conditions abroad can push refugees to return prematurely to their countries of origin. Family reunification is the most powerful motivation behind returns, but refugees who are unable to make ends meet in their host country may feel they have no choice but to return to insecurity in their country of origin. Under such circumstances, return assistance runs the risk of encouraging premature returns.Refugees who return prematurely to their country of origin often find themselves in situations of internal displacement. Over three-quarters of returning refugees surveyed were living outside their area of origin, often because of continued insecurity and housing destruction. Returning refugees and IDPs face similar challenges in terms of accessing durable solutions to their displacement.

How to Make Tajikistan's Drug Laws More Effective and Humane

March 4, 2020

Tajikistan's current laws regarding drug users and drug policy are a cumbersome mix of recently adopted international obligations and regressive provisions dating back to the Soviet period. With support from the Open Society Global Drug Policy Program and the Open Society Institute Assistance Foundation-Tajikistan, representatives from the country's Ministry of Health, Drug Control Agency, and civil society organizations analyzed existing drug legislation and bylaws with the aim of identifying areas for improvement.

Partnering to Realize the Girl Effect: Learnings from a Decade of Delivering for Girls

June 15, 2019

This report summarizes learnings from more than a decade of work, including more than $132 million in investments in more than 80 countries via a network of 140 organizations, occurring between 2004 and 2017. It is the culmination of a review of program reports and evaluations from more than 280 grants and initiatives, as well as interviews with current and former NoVo Foundation and Nike Foundation staff and partners.Our goal was to share lessons and insights that might be useful for others. This document is not a field guide for implementing specific programs, but rather a collection of learnings to inform program design.

Economic Empowerment for Women Affected by Conflict

May 1, 2019

Since 1993, Women for Women International has served more than 479,000 marginalised women affected by conflict. Through our yearlong programme marginalised women are supported to: earn and save money; influence decisions; improve their well-being; and connect to networks for support. We see promising results in our monitoring and evaluation efforts.Based on our evidence and complemented by global studies, we highlight four key, interlinked components that are necessary for effectively supporting women's economic empowerment in conflict:1. Work with men to address discriminatory gender norms. All members of society suffer from patriarchal attitudes and have a role to play in promoting gender equality – these are not just "women's issues".2. Holistic and integrated programming. Women's needs and experiences in conflict are complex and interlinked. Solely economic interventions alone have not proven to yield long-term benefits.3. Build women's economic knowledge and skills. This is vital to supporting them to build agency and influence decisions, increase their income and increase their resilience to economic shocks.4. Informal and formal support networks. In the absence of government and financial services, networks are key to supporting women to access financial support, particularly for savings and income.In conclusion, this paper makes five recommendations for international governments and donors to effectively deliver on international commitments and support marginalised women's economic empowerment in conflict-affected contexts:1. Urgently increase funding for women's rights organisations.2. Support economic empowerment programmes that include men in their programme design.3. Target the most marginalised women.4. Support holistic and integrated programming.5. Listen to the needs of marginalised women and actively include them in the design, implementation and review of economic empowerment programmes.

The Rationale for Sponsoring Students to Undertake International Study: An Assessment of National Student Mobility Scholarship Programmes

May 1, 2019

This research, driven in partnership by the British Council and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), looks at the reasons why some national governments invest in supporting outward mobility scholarship programmes. The study aims to improve our understanding of why governments sponsor these programmes; how they are designed, administered, and funded; who participates and where they study; and what impact the programmes are having.The report contains detailed case studies of 11 countries and their approaches to national outward mobility scholarship programmes, with comparative case study analysis and recommendations for countries looking to establish or develop outward mobility scholarship programmes.

Measuring Household Stress: The development of a contextualized multi-sector Coping Strategy Index for Afghanistan

May 22, 2018

Oxfam developed a multi-sector Coping Strategy Index (mCSI) to provide the humanitarian community in Afghanistan with a tool to assess and monitor the impact of interventions - especially multi-purpose cash grants - with data collected from Nangarhar, Herat, Kunduz, Kandahar and Kabul provinces. The project was funded by EU humanitarian aid and Oxfam.This report explains how the index was developed and tested in the field to verify its validity as a proxy of overall household stress. Also available to download is an introduction to the methodology.

Menstrual hygiene management in schools in South Asia: Afghanistan

January 1, 2018

In Afghanistan, there are separate schools for girls and boys and it is estimated that only 16% of schools are for girls. Many rural and displaced girls are unable to attend school regularly. There are no specific menstrual hygiene management (MHM) policies; however, gender-separated toilets are the norm and girls' washrooms have beenincorporated into designs. O&M remains a huge problem. Poor security complicates matters.

Returning to Fragility: Exploring the link between conflict and returnees in Afghanistan

December 13, 2017

Huge numbers of people are returning to Afghanistan - more than two million since 2015 - while the country is still highly fragile, with ongoing fighting and internal displacement in many areas and high levels of poverty. Oxfam's field research in Herat, Kabul, Kunduz and Nangarhar finds that for as long as these conditions do not improve, a safe and dignified return cannot be guaranteed, and forced returns remain irresponsible. With more people returning on a daily basis, tensions are likely to grow and pressure on scarce resources will increase, exacerbating inequalities in this unstable and fragile country. Sending Afghans back to volatile areas will likely result only in more displacement and fragility.