CEMR webinar

Info-session on EU programmes related to migration issues

CEMR External funded activities and IncluCities


We are facing the most massive and rapid migration wave since World War II.  In the first couple of weeks of the war in Ukraine three million people fled, many of whom were welcomed in Poland and other central- and eastern-European countries. Together with NGOs and civil society, local authorities have come together to stock border towns with first-aid supplies, food, clothing, and transport. But more people are expected to come, and we will have to move from emergency management in the border countries to more sustainable solutions of integration and inclusion in all European territories.

In light of this crisis, a concrete need for a more structured approach to migration at the local level has appeared, together with urgent demands for more knowledge exchange, city-to-city collaboration and coordination between different levels of government. This is why it's more important than ever before to understand the possibilities of funding and different EU programmes on migration and short-term and long term inclusion.  

Associations of Local and regional governments (LRGs) differ in terms of size and organisation throughout Europe, but they have a common goal: to support the work of cities and regions and, therefore, the citizens’ quality of life.

Through the presentation of the funding opportunities for migration projects, this info session aimed to foster the capacity-building of the associations of local and regional governments. It is indeed more than necessary to enable local and regional governments to diversify their access to EU funding, especially in the migration field.

The previous info-sessions organised by CEMR offered a valuable overview of the current funding opportunities in different policy fields. This session highlighted the strategies on how to make the best out of the new EU programmes for the integration on a long term basis as well to respond to the immediate needs linked to the Ukrainian refugees’ crisis.

Thanks to the presence of diverse funds, this webinar highlighted the diversity and inclusiveness of the funding availabilities. Moreover, this knowledge sharing session hopefully increased CEMR members' understanding of available EU funding Programmes. At the same time, this was an opportunity to raise their awareness of migration and inclusion issues.

The webinar tried to answer the following questions:

  • How can EU programmes support the LRG’s work on migration and inclusion? What are the next foreseen calls for proposals?
  • How do the next calls for proposals consider the current situation linked to the Ukrainian refugee crisis, especially with the specificity that most refugees are women and underage children?
  • How to maximise the chance of the local and regional governments to succeed with the EU projects?

Durmish Guri, CEMR Director for External Resources and Knowledge Strategy welcomed almost 30 participants, mostly CEMR member associations and IncluCities partners. He stressed the importance of EU funding programmes on integration and social inclusion for local and regional governments. Marlene Simeon, CEMR Director of operations reminded us that while city to city collaboration seems to be the key to managing the Ukrainian refugee crisis, the CEMR has been founded on this principle and twinning is something we should lead on in this context.   Almost 30 participants of the webinar were able to learn more about the following programmes and projects:

  • Juliana FRENDO & Iulia BARBU VLACHOPOULOS, Programme managers, Directorate-General for Migration and Home Affairs (DG HOME): Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund (AMIF). See the presentation here. 
  • Marianne DOYEN, Policy Officer, Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs & Inclusion (DG EMPL)  presented the European Social Fund Plus (ESF+), which focused on social inclusion, education and labour market integration. See the presentation here. 
  • Otilia CIOBANU, Policy Assistant, Directorate-general for Regional and Urban Policy (DG REGIO): European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). See the presentation here. 

Maria Grazia MONTELLA, CEMR Officer for Integration & Migration and coordinator of IncluCities presented what we do at the CEMR in terms of migration and inclusion. From the task force on migration and integration, the expert group of local government associations to projects such as IncluCities and partnerships, such as the Inclusion partnership of the Urban Agenda and EU Partnership on integration (CoR). We feed policies through practices we boost in the projects. It's the only way to have effective policies responding to real needs on the ground. See her presentation here. 

This info-session was organised in the framework of the IncluCities