How to transition from an assistance-driven model to durable solutions in contexts of protracted displacement with large numbers of internally displaced persons (IDPs)? How to better target efforts supporting IDPs in overcoming vulnerabilities linked to displacement?
In Colombia, with over 7 million registered IDPs, finding durable solutions is a challenging endeavour. The Colombia Victims’ Unit and multiple other Government and non-governmental institutions have developed initiatives to contribute to this purpose. In April we undertook a mission to Colombia to support this process.
Main outcomes of the mission include a strengthened knowledge and ways to capitalise on existing methodologies, tools and data in country to inform durable solutions initiatives, as well as an agreed-upon work plan on the way forward.
In fact, the Victims’ Unit is currently carrying out an analysis of IDPs’ socio-economic vulnerabilities linked to displacement, to determine whether IDPs have overcome these vulnerabilities and if they need complementary State support. In addition, the Unit and other partners (including UNHCR, UNDP the National Planning Department and the Department for Social Prosperity) have developed pilot initiatives to identify other factors that contribute to durable solutions, particularly at community level.
As outlined in the joint work plan, we will contribute to these efforts through our technical expertise in three main areas:
During the mission, a Technical Working Group was set up with representatives from different sections within the Victims’ Unit and other Government institutions. This inter-institutional Working Group will be the sounding board for discussions and analysis, and can also be a space to align the Government’s initiatives with the ongoing work of UN organisations on durable solutions.
JIPS’ mission builds upon the 2015 mission in the country, where we supported the harmonisation of tools and methodologies to assess IDPs’ need for humanitarian assistance. We are excited to continue the collaboration with the Victims’ Unit and other partners in Colombia, and contribute to enhancing the links between Government, international organisations and civil society, as well as to achieving durable solutions in the country.