ACNUR: Alto Commissariato delle Nazioni Unite per i rifugiati – Core Contribution

Progetto concluso

Paese/Regione Tema Periodo Budget
Trasferimenti forzati (rifugiati, sfollati interni, tratta di esseri umani)
01.01.2015 - 31.12.2015
CHF  15’000’000
Area di competenza

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees has a global mandate to lead and coordinate international efforts to protect refugees and resolve refugee problems worldwide. Its primary purpose is to safeguard their rights and well-being as laid down in the 1951 Refugee Convention and in the 1967 Protocol, which describe the rights of refugees, asylum seekers and stateless persons as well as the obligations of states. 144 states are party to the 1951 Convention and 145 to the 1967 Protocol.

One of UNHCR’s major roles is finding durable solutions for refugees, either through repatriation or, where this is too dangerous, through resettlement in third countries. Following the 2005 UN humanitarian response review, UNHCR has assumed assistance protection for internally displaced persons in conflict situations within the UN cluster approach and is responsible for the global clusters "Protection", "Shelter" and "Camp Coordination and Management".

Priorità strategiche della Svizzera e dell'organizazione e loro coerenza

Switzerland’s contributions (cash, secondment, in-kind) to UNHCR partly derive from the 1951 Convention preamble establishing that state parties have a responsibility to "share the burden" with refugee host countries. Being the only organisation mandated by the General Assembly to provide protection and assistance to refugees and stateless, UNHCR is an unequivocal partner of Switzerland. Within the humanitarian response review, UNHCR has assumed responsibility of the global protection cluster in favour of internally displaced persons (IDP) in conflict situations. For Switzerland, UNHCR has become a key partner for the implementation of its recently adopted strategy for the Protection of Civilians (PoC).

Switzerland strategic priorities:

  • Protection of the population affected by conflicts and disasters is enhanced, with a focus on age, gender and diversity vulnerabilities
  • Basic needs and essential services meet international standards
  • Swiss personnel with UNHCR is increased (Junior professional officer/JPO, secondment, UN staff)
  • The UN response to emergencies is improved through better coordination and operational performances of UNHCR in the field.
Risultati dell'impegno dell'organizzazione nella fase precedente
  • Improvements to the national laws and policies, in accordance with international standards concerning refugees, asylum-seekers and IDPs, were sought in more than 112 countries and legislative changes were reported in 14 countries. To this end, UNHCR continued its work with states to develop and implement protection sensitive entry systems. It undertook joint border monitoring exercises, trained border officials to increase their capacities to deal with asylum issues, and developed standardised procedures for identification, registration and follow-up for asylum-seekers and refugees arriving at border. UNHCR advocacy and legal intervention promoted access to safe, fair and efficient asylum procedures.
  • UNHCR continued to roll out its updated strategy on SGBV, with an emphasis on emergencies in 2012. Fifteen operations developed five-year strategies, while UNHCR staff and partners in 41 countries received support in SGBV strategy development and monitoring. Improvements in the provision of support to known SGBV survivors were reported in 51 refugee situations.
  • Increases in the proportion of unaccompanied or separated refugee children for whom a best interest determination process has been completed or initiated were reported in 24 refugee situations, while the proportion was maintained in an additional 18 refugee situations.
  • Increases in the percentage of households living in adequate dwellings reported in 31 refugee situations, in 9 situations where UNHCR is operationally involved, in 3 returnee situations, while the percentage was maintained in a further 24 situations.
  • Increases in water supply levels in 25 refugee situations, while the levels were maintained in a further 15 situations.
  • Some 90 % of those who expressed their intention to return voluntarily to their country of origin were supported in doing so by UNHCR in 54 situations.
  • Improvement in opportunities for local integration reported in 19 refugee situations.
Risultati dell'impegno svizzero nella fase precedente

Switzerland is firmly engaged in the consultation process leading to the regular adoption of Conclusions on International Protection by the UNHCR Executive Committee. The topic debated in 2014 concerns child education.

A long-lasting collaboration has been established with the UNHCR Division of Programme Support and Management (DPSM) with the objective of rebuilding UNHCR technical capacities and the technical integrity of its programme. The technical capacities at UNHCR HQ were significantly downgraded in the late 1990s, seriously reducing the quality of institutional guidance, support to field operations and monitoring of programmes. Switzerland’s dedicated contributions through cash and secondments have played an important role in the creation of a settlement and shelter unit as well as a cash unit within the DPSM in Geneva. Long-time expert secondments and stable annual funding from Switzerland have brought the High Commissioner to dedicate additional resources to technical sectors, in particular in the area of water and sanitation.

With the publication of four new "technical" strategies since early 2013 (Global Strategy for Livelihoods, Global Strategy for Settlement and Shelter, Global Strategy for Safe Access to Fuel and Energy and Global Strategy for Public Health), Switzerland’s contribution to restoring UNHCR capacities for greater technical integrity of its programmes is producing results.

SDC/HA "Disaster Risk Reduction and Environment" expert group is regularly contributing to UNHCR operations and programmes to improve fuel efficiency and promote better use of available and alternative sources of energy. The group contributed to the strategy document "Global Strategy for Safe Access to Fuel and Energy".

Switzerland also closely follows the development of "cash modality" projects and maintains a regular dialogue with UNHCR both at HQ and field level, with for example, the secondment of two cash experts to Lebanon in order to design a multi-purpose "cash" project, expected to launch by the autumn 2014. It also provides the secondment of a shelter expert at the UNHCR HQ for rapid deployment in acute emergencies such as in Iraq and the Central African Republic in order to set up the inter-agency shelter coordination mechanism.

Effetti a medio termine ottenuti dall'attuale impegno dell'organizzazione

Among many objectives relevant to the protection of and assistance to persons of concern, UNHCR aims to:

  • Ensure access to territorial protection and asylum procedures; protection against refoulement.
  • Reduce protection risks for people of concern, in particular discrimination, sexual and gender-based violence and specific risks faced by children.
  • Expand opportunities for durable solutions, particularly for those in protracted situations, including through strengthening the use of comprehensive approaches and contributing to sustainable reintegration, local settlement and successful resettlement in third countries.
  • Meet international standards in relation to shelter, domestic energy, water, sanitation and hygiene.
  • Promote human potential through increased opportunities for quality education and support of livelihoods.
Direzione/Ufficio responsabile DSC
Credito Aiuto umanitario
Partner del progetto Partner contrattuale
Organizzazione delle Nazioni Unite (ONU)
  • Ufficio dell’Alto Commissariato delle Nazioni Unite per i rifugiati

Budget Fase in corso Budget Svizzera CHF    15’000’000 Budget svizzero attualmente già speso CHF    15’000’000
Fasi del progetto Fase 22 01.01.2017 - 31.12.2017   (Completed)

Fase 20 01.01.2015 - 31.12.2015   (Completed)