3,000 voluntary returns in 2018

Fedasil Antwerp
The main destination countries were Ukraine, Georgia and Romania.

Fedasil is responsible for the reception of asylum seekers in Belgium, but also coordinates the voluntary return of migrants to their country of origin. In 2018, 2,994 migrants requested assistance from the voluntary return programme organised by Fedasil. This represents a decrease of 22% compared to 2017. The detailed report is attached (document in French).

The majority of the returnees were foreigners without a residence permit (56% of returns). The others were asylum seekers whose asylum application was pending or had been rejected.

Fedasil intends to continue raising awareness among people without a residence permit, with the goal of informing as many people as possible about the possibilities for a return. A website (www.voluntaryreturn.be) is also available for migrants and associations in the field.

Reintegration assistance
The return to the country of origin is organised from Belgium and includes transport costs and assistance to ensure the trip takes place smoothly. Returns are very discrete.

In 2018, 46% of the returnees received reintegration assistance. This is additional assistance offered to migrants. Reintegration helps to address the problems faced by migrants upon their return, such as the renovation or rental of a home, job searches and medical expenses.

This aid is monitored on the ground by the local partners of Caritas and the International Organization for Migration (IOM). Reintegration allowances are not given to the migrants in cash, but to the local partners of Caritas and the IOM, who then make the necessary payments.

In 2018, Fedasil started a partnership with the Belgian development agency, Enabel. A project is being set up in Guinea and offers assistance through the training, reception and employment of returnees.