The Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration (AVRR) programme supports migrants with voluntary return to the country of origin or to a third country where returnee is entitled to permanent residence. Assisted Voluntary Return and reintegration (AVRR) is one of many migration management services IOM offers to migrants and governments. It aims at orderly, humane and cost-effective return and reintegration of migrants who are unable or unwilling to remain in host/transit countries and wish to return voluntarily to their countries of origin. This voluntary return programme is conducted in close cooperation with governmental institutions and migrant communities, constituting an example of multi-level approach to voluntary return and creating a comprehensive migration management system for the benefit of all parties involved. Working together within the Voluntary Return framework, IOM, its counterparts, and its Voluntary Return partners are able to offer a more humane return option in full respect of the human rights and dignity of migrants.
All migrants residing in Serbia irrespective of their legal status are eligible for support for voluntary departure, when they do not have means to support their own return: (ex) asylum seekers, stranded migrants, migrants in irregular situation, rejected asylum seekers, vulnerable migrants. Nevertheless, the following conditions apply:
- Does not have the financial means to pay for the departure and intends to leave Serbia permanently;
- Has a valid travel document or is able to obtain one;
- Is a national of a country where IOM’s voluntary return is possible to organize;
- The government of Serbia does not have objections to the departure from Serbia.
What kind of support does IOM offer to a migrant under AVRR?
- Information and counselling about voluntary departure in the language of the migrant, logistical and financial support to plan the journey;
- Assistance with obtaining a travel document and coverage of the associated costs;
- Assistance at Belgrade airport with the departure and, if required, during transit and at arrival;
- In most cases a reinstallation allowance to cover expenses in the first period after return from Serbia is provided;
- Additional support is available to vulnerable migrants.
Support with obtaining travel documents
IOM supports migrants in obtaining a travel document from the respective Embassy or a Consular representation in Serbia or abroad, and, if required, covers the costs for obtaining a travel document.
Financial and support with reintegration
Migrants who are eligible for voluntary departure from Serbia with support of IOM can qualify for a return allowance to sustain initial needs after departure from Serbia. In addition to the described return support, migrants can be eligible for receiving support for reintegration in the country of origin. The in kind support is facilitated by the IOM office in the country of origin and can be used for educational purposes, starting/investing in a business, medical needs or, if required, partially for housing.
Return and reintegration in Serbia
Working in close cooperation with different IOM missions in Europe, IOM Serbia assists in voluntary return and reintegration of Serbian nationals returning voluntarily to their home in Serbia, from The Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, Italy and Switzerland, and many other countries in the
EU and beyond.
In host countries, IOM provides counseling to migrants through specific inquiries, the provision of pre-departure relevant information on the situation in Serbia - including medical assistance and reintegration opportunities, airport assistance upon arrival, reinstallation grant payments and overland transportation thereafter to the final destination in Serbia.
Upon arrival in Serbia, eligible returnees can benefit from tailored post-return reintegration support that contributes to the sustainability of returns. The IOM Serbia support is provided through the provision of information pre-departure, extensive counseling upon arrival and provision of individual reintegration assistance, according to the specific needs and skills of each returnee. Types of reintegration assistance can include provision for specific information on the possibilities in the country through country sheets and leaflets, self-employment (small business setup), training (educational/vocational), job placements, referrals, and house allowance. IOM Serbia provides tailored support to vulnerable migrants, by helping them access local services and exercise their rights. The support to vulnerable migrants is provided by IOM Serbia in Belgrade, immediately upon arrival, as well as in their communities of return, as needed.