UNHCR and partners supports volunteers to conduct visits into their own communities where they pass on updated information on government policies, assistance delivered and other information which impact their well-being.
In turn, the outreach volunteers share information on community priorities, including gaps in assistance and services which inform and improve the humanitarian programmes.
Volunteers also carry out social activities, such as providing homework support, organizing cleaning campaigns, raising awareness on good hygiene practices and visiting home-bound persons, such as older persons and persons with disabilities.
Outreach volunteers are effective in maintaining close contact refugees and in promoting community participation, as well as fostering positive relations with host communities, especially in urban areas.
To see some of the volunteers' activities, click here.
UNHCR Community-Based Protection Unit is launching a 360 degree evaluation of the outreach volunteer program, which currently includes around 550 general and specialized volunteers nationwide.
The evaluation aims to explore the capacity building needs of UNHCR/NGO focal persons managing the outreach volunteer program, assess the level of available resources for outreach volunteers to adequately perform their tasks, and measure the community’s perception of the outreach volunteer initiative and its impact. As a result of the evaluation, standard operating procedures (SOPs) will be developed to support field offices and partner organizations to effectively manage their outreach volunteer programmes in a smooth and consistent manner with optimal impact and no harm.
The comprehensive evaluation will incorporate feedback from outreach volunteers themselves, their coordinators/managers, and refugee community members (including those who have or have not been approached by volunteers) to ensure that feedback is received from all relevant parties. Each volunteer and coordinator will complete the survey themselves using an electronic link shared with them. As for consultations with refugees, they will be conducted through phone or face-to-face interviews with refugees identified at UNHCR reception centers or at community centers. Each survey will need around 30 minutes to be completed. The surveys do not include any identifiable information, to preserve participants’ privacy and confidentiality. The data collection for the evaluation process will be completed within 1 month, which is by October 1.
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