'A City Says Yes! Welcoming Resettled Refugees in Europe' - May 8th 2013, Brussels

Download a copy of the full conference report including transcripts of keynote speeches, summaries of all interventions and a short report on the conclusions of the day. 

Click here to visit the event photo gallery.

On May 8th 2013 in Brussels, in the framework of the SHARE Project, ICMC Europe and the Committee of the Regions co-hosted the conference ‘A City Says Yes! Welcoming resettled refugees in Europe’

Chaired by the Mayor of Lisbon and chair of the CIVEX Committee at the Committee of the Regions Mr. Antonio Costa, the conference programme explored the role of local and regional authorities and their civil society partners in mobilising support for refugee resettlement amongst citizens, and influencing resettlement and integration policy at national and European levels.

Speakers included Rui Tavares MEPDeputy Mayor of Aachen Hilde Scheidt and representatives of ICMC, PRO ASYL, the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), the City of Sanctuary movement, UNHCR, the EUROCITIES network, the lead SHARE city of Sheffield, Portuguese Refugee Council, the European Council on Refugees and Exiles (ECRE) and others.  The event was attended by over 90 delegates from European institutions, international organisations, civil society organisations, networks and European regions and cities.  The event also officially launched the ICMC and PRO ASYL publication, produced in the framework of the SHARE Project, 'A City Says Yes! Reflections on the experiences of the Save Me campaign to promote refugee resettlement in Germany' that captures the successful tools and approaches of the German 'Save Me' campaign.

Conference presentations and discussions gave rise to a number of conclusions in key thematic areas, including on what constitutes a 'Welcoming Community', how strong partnerships betweenlocal and regional authorities, civil society organisations and citizens can create welcome at the local level, the central importance of volunteers to facilitating integration and of incorporating the views and ideas of previously resettled refugees into the development of local programmes.