What is the Geneva Peace Week?The Geneva Peace Week (GPW) is a leading annual forum in the international peacebuilding calendar, and the flagship event of the Geneva Peacebuilding Platform. This year, the thematic focus of the week is "Rebuilding trust after disruption: Pathways to reset international cooperation". Geneva Peace Week 2020 (GPW20) aims to galvanize leadership, build trust and contribute to transforming international cooperation in the wake of COVID-19. Geneva Peace Week 2020 will be held totally online from 2-6 November 2020. Institutions and individuals in Geneva and around the world have come together to organize an interactive GPW20 experience. Attendees are welcome to participate in GPW ‘Live Sessions’ and to also engage with the new GPW ‘Digital Series’. The forum is free and open to the public, and details on how to participate can be found below. The ILO PROSPECTS Programme was selected to participate in a virtual online panel on Monday 2 November, from 18:30 to 19:45 CET.
PROSPECTS PanelFor refugees, the opportunity to access decent work is fundamental to their protection and well-being, to restore refugees’ dignity and life purpose. Being able to access employment, maintain and expand their skills and find a decent job prevent long gaps in education and economic activity. The opportunity to access decent work is integral to the restoration of human dignity, strengthening resilience. Further, working allows for more interaction between refugees and host communities and helps thereby foster a climate of trust and peaceful coexistence.
In addition, the entry of refugees into national labour markets can sometimes exacerbate an already challenging situation and put peaceful coexistence and social cohesion in a host country at risk. In this context, the ILO adopted the Employment and Decent Work for Peace and Resilience Recommendation (Recommendation No. 205) in June 2017. It provides a normative framework focusing on world of work-related measures to prevent and respond to the devastating effects of crises evoked by conflict or natural disaster on economies and societies, while also paying special attention to vulnerable groups like children, young people, women and displaced persons (Chapter XI, ILO Recommendation No. 205).
COVID-19 crisis has exacerbated the challenges and specific vulnerabilities that forcibly displaced persons face, including psychological trauma, lack of opportunity and protection risks, host communities struggle to pursue their own development efforts in an environment that has been transformed by a large influx of newcomers. Furthermore, the crisis can potentially ignite or exacerbate grievances, discrimination, mistrust and sense of injustice over access to health services, decent jobs and livelihoods, which are potential conflict drivers that could undermine development, peace and social cohesion. Epidemics and economic crises can have a disproportionate impact on certain segments of the population, especially the most vulnerable and disadvantaged groups, which can lead to increasing inequality, thereby posing a severe threat to social cohesion.
PROSPECTS’ approach to social cohesionThe world is witnessing the highest levels of displacement on record and, in recent years, forced displacement has increased in scale and complexity. While forcibly displaced persons face specific vulnerabilities, including psychological trauma, lack of opportunity and protection risks, host communities struggle to pursue their own development efforts in an environment that has been transformed by large movements of forcibly displaced people.
As displacement has become increasingly protracted, responses are focusing more on durable solutions backed by more dignified, inclusive and comprehensive programmes for refugees and the communities that host them. The aim is to enhance self-reliance, facilitate empowerment and strengthen social cohesion. These responses need to be rapidly consolidated through significant international support built on a foundation of robust and effective partnerships that maximize synergies and leverage comparative advantages. In this context, the PROSPECTS Partnership Programme has been launched, spearheaded by the Government of the Netherlands and bringing together the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the International Labour Organization (ILO), the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the World Bank. The programme is being implemented in eight countries: Egypt, Ethiopia, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Sudan and Uganda.
Objectives of the Panel
- To introduce the innovative PROSPECTS approach focusing on conflict-sensitive durable solutions for social cohesion backed by more dignified, inclusive and comprehensive programmes for refugees and the communities that host them.
- To introduce partners country level initiatives contributing to inclusive development, social cohesion and peaceful coexistence.
- Moderator: Ms Ana Uzelac, Lead Adviser of PROSPECTS, Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs
- ILO: Introduction by Ms Tine Straermose, Special Adviser to the Deputy Director General for Policy
- IFC: Mr Michel Botzung, Manager, Fragile and Conflict-Affected Situations, Africa Unit
- World Bank: Dr Leila Hanafi, Program Manager, PROSPECTS Partnership Global Program on Forced Displacement , Fragility, Conflict, Violence and Forced Displacement Group
- UNHCR: Mr Alessio Baldaccini, Associate Education Officer
- UNICEF: Ms Verena Knaus, Chief, Migration and Displacement
- Visit https://eu.eventscloud.com/website/3030/ and view the 'Live Sessions Agenda'.
- Click on the ‘Register here’ button after adding live sessions to your agenda (November 2nd, 6.30 PM)
- Type in your professional email address and select ‘Attendees’.