activities
Work with Refugees and Asylum Seekers
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  HANDBOOK ON THE INTEGRATION OF PERSONS WHO HAVE BEEN GRANTED ASYLUM OR INTERNATIONAL PROTECTION IN MUNICIPALITIES


Mission Statement
The BRC is a volunteer organisation, which is a part of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and is guided by its fundamental principles: humanity, impartiality, neutrality, independence, voluntary service, unity and universality. Through its network of volunteers in the whole country, the BRC provides assistance to the vulnerable people in disaster and crisis situations. By training programmes and activities for the benefit of the society, the BRC contributes to alleviate and prevent suffering in all its forms, protects health and life and ensures respect for the human being.
The RMS of BRC is committed to facilitating refugee integration, to preventing the isolation of migrants, and to promoting tolerance towards both groups in the Bulgarian society. In accordance with the Red Cross principles for impartiality and humanity, the RMS of BRC is trying to assist the most vulnerable refugees, to confront the xenophobia and to raise the public awareness and the tolerance towards the refugees in Bulgaria.

The Bulgarian Red Cross (BRC) has been involved in refugee assistance and protection since 1993. For the time being it is the main non-governmental organisation offering social services to and facilitating the integration of the refugees in Bulgaria. The Refugee-Migrant Service (RMS) of BRC was established in 1997 as a separate administrative and operative body within the National Committee. The RMS has branches in the BRC regional committees in the cities of Haskovo, Sliven, Burgas, Blagoevgrad, Vidin. In cases of emergency it works closely with the rest 25 regional branches throughout the country.

People of concern to RMS
The RMS has projects offering services, financial assistance or assistance in kind to recognised refugees, humanitarian status holders, asylum seekers, stranded migrants and rejected asylum seekers. The RMS is operational on the territory of Bulgaria. It services 1500 - 2000 people every year. From 2005 the service offers food and medicines applicants fot status ''refugee'' detained at the border.

Legal background
The assistance to asylum seekers in procedure and to recognised refugees is included among the main activities of the BRC in the Law of the Bulgarian Red Cross (Chapter 4, article 6.) and in its Charter. The BRC is named in the Law on Refugees, as the agency to work in cooperation with the government for the reception, the social adaptation and in all aspects of the integration of refugees in Bulgaria (Chapter IV, article 37.1,3,4,6,7, article 38.1 and article 29).

Funding
The activities of the RMS of BRC have been financed by the UNHCR and by European Red Cross national societies. The RMS organises charity and fund raising events with the participation of refugees and gladly accepts donations.
Bank details BULBANK, Branch Kaloyan Sofia 1000 3, Kaloyan str.
Bank Account in BGL No 1000030265 Bank Code 62176307
Bank Account in USD No 1100030248 Bank Code 62176307

National and International networking
The RMS of BRC collaborates with the governmental Agency for Refugees within the Council of Ministers, the UNHCR, the IFRC/RC, IOM, National Service Border Police etc. Frequent contacts and cooperation are maintained with all the Bulgarian NGOs, active in this field.

The BRC is a member of the European Council for Refugees and Exiles (ECRE) since 1997 and a member of the Platform of European Red Cross National Societies for Cooperation in the field of Refugees and Migrants (PERCO) since 2000.

All the activities of the Refugee-Migrant Service of BRC aim at preventing the isolation of the refugees and at facilitating their integration.


Refugee-Migrant Service
1407 Sofia
76, James Bourchier Blvd.
tel.: (+359 2) 81 64 709
E-mail: m.stoyanova@redcross.bg