Canada to host next International Donors’ Conference in Solidarity with Venezuelan Refugees and Migrants
May 6, 2021 - Ottawa, Ontario - Global Affairs Canada
The number of refugees and migrants leaving Venezuela is increasing daily, making it now the second-largest external displacement crisis in the world, with over 5.6 million individuals having fled the country since 2015. The current global COVID-19 pandemic has compounded an already difficult situation for Venezuelan refugees, migrants and their host communities. Canada is calling on the international community to mobilize much-needed additional resources to help respond to the urgent needs of millions of people.
On June 17, 2021, led by the Honourable Karina Gould, Minister of International Development, Canada will host a high-level International Donors’ Conference in Solidarity with Venezuelan Refugees and Migrants in collaboration with UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and the International Organization for Migration. The 2 organizations are co-leads of the Regional Inter-Agency Coordination Platform for Refugees and Migrants from Venezuela (R4V), which coordinates the response to the needs of refugees and migrants from Venezuela, and their host communities in Latin America and the Caribbean.
The conference will bring together host and donor governments, as well as other key actors in the response, including from civil society and the private sector, and will hear directly from affected refugees and migrants. It will be an opportunity to secure additional financial and technical support, raise awareness of key challenges, priorities and opportunities, and identify actions to maintain focus on the crisis.
“Countries in the region continue to generously welcome Venezuelans, but their capacity and resources are reaching a breaking point. It is essential for the international community to respond with a clear show of solidarity to invest in long-term solutions for refugees and migrants, and their host communities.”
- Karina Gould, Minister of International Development
“COVID-19 has worsened the already desperate situation of millions Venezuelan refugees and migrants in Latin America and the Caribbean. Many have lost their sources of income and sometimes their homes, exposing them to destitution, exploitation, gender-based violence and other risks. With this International Donors’ Conference, we want to send a strong message that the world cares and will support them—and their generous hosts—in their greatest time of need.”
- Filippo Grandi, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
“Now is the time to reinforce our efforts to provide refugees and migrants the tools to contribute to their host communities and more long-term solutions. We call for greater commitment from the international community, not only to address the humanitarian needs, but also to foster new opportunities for millions of Venezuelans seeking a new life across the region.”
- António Vitorino, Director General, International Organization for Migration
“Millions of refugees and migrants, and the communities hosting them, continue to need urgent support from the international community. Timely and flexible funding is crucial to help address the most pressing needs and to promote the integration of refugees and migrants from Venezuela in the region.”
- Eduardo Stein, Joint UNHCR-IOM Special Representative for Venezuelan Refugees and Migrants
The funding committed in last year’s conference, contributed by Canada and other donor countries, has improved the lives of 3.18 million Venezuelan refugees and migrants and host countries, including through humanitarian assistance and support for health services and education.
Since 2019, Canada has committed $86 million in international assistance to respond to the Venezuela crisis.
Canada is part of the Group of Friends of the Quito Process to support countries responding to the historic outflow of refugees and migrants from Venezuela.
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