Population, Refugees and Migration Legal Assistance Programs (2016–2018)
Due to conflicts in the region in the last few years, Armenia has become a destination for refugees from Syria, Iraq, Iran, Ukraine, parts of Africa, and displaced persons from the Nagorno-Karabakh region. Approximately 17,000 Syrian refugees alone are in Armenia. The government of Armenia has undertaken significant efforts to cover their basic needs — housing, immigration status, healthcare, some employment and credit assistance, and education — by coordinating interventions through its Ministry of Diaspora.
ABA ROLI’s 2016–17 program, funded by the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration, complemented and supported these efforts. Although multiple government and nongovernmental organization (NGO) partners provide an array of support services relating to employment, healthcare, education, and legal assistance, only ABA ROLI with its NGO and government partners together provided holistic assistance for program beneficiaries, with law and procedure as a key component in accessing all services available to refugees.
ABA ROLI’s 2017–18 U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration-funded legal assistance program for displaced and conflict-affected persons continued to provide assistance to refugees and displaced persons in Armenia. Building on the success of the 2016-17 program, ABA ROLI increased the staff and capacity of its Refugee Legal Assistance Center (RLAC), which provided legal, financial, procedural, and logistical support to beneficiaries, and widened its scope to reach more beneficiaries. Through this program, ABA ROLI increased the capacity and coordination of its partners and volunteers; consulted and represented refugee and displaced beneficiaries in RLAC; conducted trainings for refugees on issues such as tax, customs, healthcare, education, land rights, how to establish a business, family law, and gender parity; and provided educational programming for children about their rights.