232 Syrian refugees resettled

In 2016, 232 refugees, all Syrian, have already been received in Belgium as part of the resettlement programme. Prior to their departure and up to their settlement, they are supported by various stakeholders

Between January and July 2016, 232 Syrian refugees arrived in Belgium through the resettlement programme. The majority were from Lebanon, but some were resettled from Jordan and Egypt.

Many arrivals are already planned for this year: mostly Syrians from Iraq, Turkey and Lebanon.

Selection and meetings

The Belgian authority responsible for selection (the CGRS) travelled to Lebanon for a series of interviews with refugees whose cases had been proposed by the HCR. Syrians from Jordan and Egypt were selected based solely on their case.

Before their departure, refugees from Turkey and Lebanon also met with employees from the agency responsible for their reception in Belgium (Fedasil). The aim of these meetings was to inform them of the subsequent steps and prepare them for their arrival and life in Belgium. For the first time, they were also able to interact with a Syrian resettled in Belgium via videoconferencing.

Reception and integration

During a period of three to six weeks, the refugees are accommodated in the Fedasil reception centres. Throughout their stay at the centre, refugees take the first steps towards integration through course modules and various activities.

This is also where they meet the NGOs Caritas International and Convivial for the first time. These organisations will support and guide their integration process for up to two years. In particular, they regularly arrange activities bringing together several resettled refugees to give them the opportunity to discuss their feelings and experiences.

After their stay at the centre, refugees move into individual housing and receive support from a Public Social Welfare Centre. Some Public Social Welfare Centres become part of the resettlement programme by agreeing to offer housing and by providing intensive support for a year.