UNDP in collaboration with the Voluntary Return and Resettlement Commission  (VRRC)  have organized yesterday November 11th a two-day workshop on "Strengthening Coordination and Collaboration for Sustainable Voluntary Returns and Reintegration in Darfur."   

This workhop was organized as a part of the Promotion of Returns Project under the Darfur Development Fund with the generous funding from Qatar Fund for Development. The project aims to promote sustainable return and reintegration of both IDPs and refugees, with a view to contributing to the implementation of the Darfur Development Strategy.

Representatives of the Commissioner of Refugees, the Humanitarian Aid Commission, VRRC, the Academia from all the 5 states of Darfur and UN partners have attended the workshop where they have highlighted the need to harmonize and coordinate efforts of the various partners to support the voluntary return programs in the Darfur states.

UNDP Country Director Dr. Selva Ramachandran addressed the opening session of the workshop by emphasizing that "This Returns Project has been implementing activities to social cohesion, improve access to basic services and livelihoods for returnees, in close coordination with government entities. Concurrently, the project has been also providing support to strengthen coordination functions among government entities for sustainable

returns.  Over the last 3 years, the project has successfully provided direct support to over 18,000 households in West, North and Central Darfur States whilst support in the capacity of VRRC in all 5 states. UNDP has been working together with the VRRC to develop their institutional capacity in close partnerships with other key humanitarian entities such as HAC and COR on the one hand, and development entities such as State level ministries on the other hand and  would like to emphasize here that it is not just UNDP’s support, it is a joint initiative with UNHCR, in partnership with UNAMID and IOM."

Furthermore, H.E. Hamid Mumtaz, Minister of Federal Governance have asserted in his welcoming remarks the importance of "Strong partnerships between the various humanitarian players in Darfur to ensure stability, livelihoods, and prosperity for returnees in the five Darfur States. " He further expressed hope that the workshop will have "Constructive deliberations on a number of important topics such as the provision of Sustainable solutions for IDPs and returnees, the specific  role of partners and parties in supporting the Voluntary Return Program and  the issue of compensation and return of property and its impact in achieving social satisfaction and peace."

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