The West Midlands Strategic Migration Partnership has a strategic role in supporting local authorities in the West Midlands in their acceptance of refugees resettled to the UK under the Vulnerable Person’s Resettlement Scheme (VPRS) and the Vulnerable Children’s Resettlement Scheme (VCRS) and facilitate the refugee family’s arrival to their new homes in the West Midlands. We also work to develop strategy around ensuring the long term success of resettlement in the region and the integration of the resettled families into their new communities.

  • Resettlement is the transfer of refugees from an asylum country to another State that has agreed to admit them and ultimately grant them permanent settlement.
  • UNHCR is mandated by its Statute and the UN General Assembly Resolutions to undertake resettlement as one of the three durable solutions.
  • Resettlement States provide the refugee with legal and physical protection, including access to civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights similar to those enjoyed by nationals.

Resettled refugees will meet one or more of the following vulnerability criteria:

  • Legal and physical protection needs
  • Medical needs
  • Survivors of violence and torture
  • Women-at-risk
  • Lack of local integration prospects
  • Elderly refugees
  • Family reunification
  • Children and adolescents

Vulnerable Persons Resettlement Scheme (VPRS)

The VPRS was launched in January 2014, with the scheme designed to help those most in need. By June 2015, 216 individuals had arrived in the UK through this scheme. The scheme was later expanded through an announcement by the then Prime Minister David Cameron that committed the UK to accepting 20,000 vulnerable Syrian Refugees by the end of parliament. In July 2017, the scheme was again expanded to include individuals of all nationalities, not only Syrian, but all nationalities in the region who have been displaced by the Syrian conflict. This scheme is separate and in addition to the individuals resettled under the VCRS, Mandate and Gateway schemes operated by the UK Government.

Vulnerable Children’s Resettlement Scheme (VCRS)

On the 21st April, 2016, the UK Government announced a scheme to resettle up to 3000 individuals to include children and their families. It was on the UNHCR’s recommendation that the scheme not solely target unaccompanied children, but also children at risk in other forms such as abuse and exploitation. The VCRS represents the largest resettlement effort that specifically at children in the MENA region.

The WMSMP supports the resettlement process of the VPRS and VCRS by liaising with both the Home Office, local authorities and stakeholders to facilitate the arrival of refugee families into the region and to strategically support their longer term integration.