The first Global Refugee Forum (GRF) benefited from an unprecedented contribution of more than 70 refugees from around the world. The role of refugees in preparing for and participating in the GRF has set an important precedent for all in which policies concerning the lives of refugees are discussed. APNOR along with Global Refugee Led Network (GRN) was the first refugee-led entities that produced the first refugee participation guideline endorsed by many international actors as well as “GRF refugee participation pledge” which was joint by governments of Canada, Denmark, Netherland and Australia.
Contributing to these collective efforts, we continued our advocacy to the Canadian government understanding that they were the co-chair at the ATCR conference 2020 and aimed at establishing meaningful refugee participation as a firm part of the ATCR. APNOR & GRN Steering Committee members (Najeeba Wazefadost), (Anila Noor) and ( Shaza Alrihawi) leaded the establishment of the ATCR Refugee Steering Group (RSG) concept note from the refugee participation guideline. APNOR along with four other refugees also drafted the final refugee statement for 2020. In the short time provided, APNOR was able to hold formal and informal refugee participation focus groups across few countries in 2020 which was fed back immediately to the ATCR conference 2020.
The ATCR community has recognized the value of refugee participation in previous ATCR cycles. It has also acknowledged that refugee engagement contributes to solutions that are sustainable and more impactful, innovative forms of advocacy and the development of policies that are closer to the reality on the ground.
Asia Pacific Network of Refugees (APNOR) is the only region-wide refugee-led network of refugee-led initiatives in the Asia Pacific region that is working with and for refugees. APNOR was established in 2018, on the recommendation of Asia Pacific Summit of Refugees (APSOR).