USA Provides USD 240,000 to IOM for COVID-19 Response

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The International Organization for Migration (IOM) continues ongoing support for returnee migrants, vulnerable populations, and migrant-receiving communities in Laos under a new project funded by the United States Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration to the tune of USD 240,000.

The funding forms part of the Covid-19 response by the Government of the United States to Laos in line with the IOM Covid-19 Strategic Response and Recovery Plan. As Laos continues to receive a steady flow of migrants returning from neighbouring countries and challenges faced by migrants in the current Covid-19 climate, the project will directly benefit 35,000 returnee migrants through enhanced capacity support and direct assistance, delivered at Point of Entries (PoEs) and Quarantine Centres. A further 100,000 vulnerable populations and migrant-receiving communities will indirectly benefit from the rollout of training and orientations: information, education, and communication resources (IECs), and support services. The support provided by the Government of the United States is critical assistance to the comprehensive Covid-19 response and recovery where migrants are the central focus to ensure their well-being.  IOM’s support includes interventions at quarantine centres and PoEs to provide life-saving personal protective equipment (PPEs); non-food items (NFIs); IECs; safe migration orientation training, and data collection activities.

Since the start of the pandemic, IOM has been providing ongoing support to Lao returnee migrants and vulnerable populations. So far in 2021 alone, IOM’s support has directly benefitted over 10,000 returnee migrants; over 20,000 support packages had been delivered, and the rollout of safe migration orientation has indirectly benefited over 50,000 vulnerable populations. All were conducted in close collaboration with the Government of Laos to build pandemic response capacities and resilience amongst returnee migrants and vulnerable populations. The new project will enable IOM to further enhance its support in at least 4 provinces- Champasack, Savannakhet, Vientiane Provinces, and Vientiane Capital. The project will run until the end of 2021.