Regional Refugee and Migrant Response Plan for Refugees and Migrants from Venezuela 2022

Regional Plan
Last updated: January 13 2022
Funding required
People in need
People Targeted

IOM Vision

The Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) region continues to face increasing flows of refugees and migrants from Venezuela, making it the largest humanitarian crisis in the history of the region. As a response, IOM supports both the immediate humanitarian and protection needs in transit and destination countries, as well as addresses the longer-term needs of refugees, migrants and affected host communities. Through its role as co-leader of the Regional Interagency Coordination Platform (R4V) and its programmatic implementation, IOM works to promote safe and dignified migration across the region.

Save lives and respond to needs through humanitarian assistance and protection

Funding required
People Targeted
International migrant, Local population / community, Refugee
Primary target groups
Description of People and Entities Targeted

Migrants, refugees, host communities, government counterparts, vulnerable groups, such as children, pregnant women, female-single-headed household, older persons, persons with disabilities, indigenous communities, victims of trafficking, GBV survivors, LGBTQI+ communities 

Basic needs, including food

To ensure that immediate basic needs are met, IOM provides in-kind or cash-based assistance as a complement to longer-term solutions. This includes:

  • Provision of food assistance to vulnerable migrants, refugees and host communities, including through provision of in-kind distribution of food kits, hot meals and lunchboxes to schoolchildren and cash-based interventions such as food vouchers and prepaid cards;
  • Provision of multi-purpose cash assistance to cover costs for items and services such as food, household items, rent and public transport
Funding required
Plan types

Direct health support

IOM supports migrants and refugees through the direct provision of primary health-services as well as continuity of health care services, including for sexual and reproductive health, HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, non-communicable diseases and COVID-19. This includes:

  • Support for COVID-19 vaccinations, through logistics and transportation;
  • Provision of health services and medicines, including through the deployment of mobile clinics, payment for examinations in local clinics and hospitals, employment of medical staff and the provision of medicines, medical supplies and equipment; 
  • Consultations for family planning and provision of methods of contraception as well as prenatal and antenatal care services;
  • Improvement of the access of refugees and migrants from Venezuela to medical specialists and specialists' services for those with chronic illnesses. 
Funding required
Plan types

Mental health and psychosocial support in humanitarian response

IOM supports mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) activities with the objective to reduce psychosocial vulnerabilities and promote resilience. This includes:

  • Provision of trainings on psychological first aid (PFA) for people directly working with migrants and refugees, to enable them to respond to distressed persons in a psychosocially informed and supportive manner;
  • Support to mental health and psychosocial wellbeing through community workshops with migrants and refugees from Venezuela and the host community on MHPSS awareness raising and psychoeducational activities, among other topics;
  • Provision of specialized psychological support to children and adolescents with a focus on coping with trauma;
  • Provision of psychological and/or psychiatric assistance to migrants and refugees from Venezuela in need of specialized services;
  • Creation of an online platform to facilitate access to mental health services;
  • Provision of socio-relational activities (such as sport and play, or creative and art-based activities) on community- and family level for children and adolescents from Venezuela in need of mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS). For those in need of more focused support, individual and group counselling sessions will also be provided. .   
Funding required
Plan types

Movement assistance

To strengthen movement assistance, IOM assists migrants and refugees with relocation activities such as:

  • Strengthen humanitarian transportation services through cash and voucher assistance modality, including providing safe domestic transport across host countries to the main cities where migrants and refugees from Venezuela can access basic services;
  • Provide logistical support to national relocation programmes, including purchase of flight tickets and medical examinations, such as fit to travel tests and COVID-19 tests;
  • Transport migrants to accommodation centres, border points or to migration offices for regularization purposes;
  • Develop guidelines, recommendation, and tools to provide technical and operation support to key actors of internal humanitarian transportation.


Funding required
Plan types


With the objective to ensure safety, dignity and well-being of all crisis-affected persons, prioritizing vulnerable groups, protection is integrated and coordinated across all sectors of the response. Activities include:

  • Strengthening prevention and protection mechanisms for human trafficking and gender-based violence (GBV), including the improvement of capacities of government authorities, partners, and local stakeholders in the prevention and protection response to GBV survivors and victims of trafficking (VoTs);
  • Improving assistance to VoTs, survivors of GBV and other forms of sexual exploitation and abuse;
  • Providing VoTs with emergency services, specialized shelter, orientation and support;
  • Provide specialized child protection services to vulnerable children including unaccompanied minors, as well as improve access to protection services through the establishment and equipment of support spaces;
  • Support the Regional Coordination Mechanism for Human Trafficking. This mechanism aims to support initiatives for the creation or strengthening of regional working roundtables on the issue of human trafficking (Quito Process, Mercosur, South American Conference on Migration (SCM) and Caribbean Migration Consultations (CMC));
  • Provide technical assistance to local authorities to strengthen policies and strategies aimed at protecting migrants at risk;
  • Establish and/or strengthen support spaces and centres that provide assistance and protection to refugees and migrants, including orientation and legal assistance;
  • Increase knowledge and improve procedures on PSEA through studies, risk assessments and capacity building;
  • Implement case management support to provide protection and assistance services to vulnerable migrants and refugees;
  • Promote accountability to affected populations (AAP) both across the sectorial responses and implemented as a standalone activity, such as conducting a regional perception study and developing of participatory methodology and toolkit for community consultations, to ensure safe, timely and relevant programming.  
Funding required
Plan types

Provision of water, sanitation and hygiene in emergencies

To address immediate needs, IOM supports activities which ensure safe and sufficient access to appropriate water, sanitation and hygiene services, such as:

  • Distribution of culturally appropriate and gender and age sensitive hygiene kits;
  • Implementation of hygiene promotion activities in spontaneous settlements and indigenous communities;
  • Provision of safe drinking water for transit populations and in border areas through water trucking and tanks, as well as distribution of water bottles.
  • Provision of hygiene supplies and equipment for COVID-19 prevention.
Funding required
Plan types

Shelter, settlements and non-food items

IOM provides shelter and non-food items (NFI) assistance through activities primarily aimed at vulnerable migrants and refugees, including:

  • Ensuring access to temporary accommodation to guarantee emergency assistance to the most vulnerable migrants and refugees, through cash based-initiatives temporary rental support. IOM will adapt the cash-based modality in accordance with contextual opportunities and limitations, ensuring that assistance is delivered in the most effective manner and taking into account beneficiary preference;
  • Providing shelter kits and essential household items to migrants, refugees and affected host population;
  • Improving conditions of temporary collective centres and reception centres for migrants and refugees in vulnerable situations, including rehabilitation of infrastructure and provision of household items such as furniture and appliances where necessary;
  • Providing access to temporary collective centres to vulnerable migrants and refugees; 
  • Conducting collective center management toolkit trainings based on the toolkit developed in 2021;
  • Developing guidelines, recommendations and tools to provide technical and operational support to key actors providing individual shelter, including strategies to achieve durable solutions and seek exit strategies;
  • Ensuring protection mainstreaming, including mitigation of GBV risks, throughout the shelter interventions.
Funding required
Plan types
© IOM Chile - Iquique
© IOM Chile - Iquique

Address the drivers and longer term impacts of crises and displacement through investments in recovery and crisis prevention

Funding required
People Targeted
International migrant, Local population / community, Refugee
Primary target groups
Description of People and Entities Targeted

Migrants and refugees, vulnerable individuals, including victims of trafficking and GBV survivors, government counterparts, communities, indigenous communities, health professionals, as well as local and national entities.

Community stabilization

To continue promoting socio-economic integration and to provide durable solutions to migrants and refugees from Venezuela, IOM’s programming will focus on the provision of longer-term support to essential services and basic rights. To improve social cohesion between migrants, refugees and host communities, interventions will also include campaigns and initiatives on anti-xenophobia and anti-discrimination. Activities will include:

  • Facilitation of income-generating activities though provision of seed capital and small-business in kind-grants for migrants, refugees and host community members;
  • Support for economic integration, with an emphasis on women and youth, through job placement, trainings, job fairs and events;
  • Implementation of communication, integration, sport and cultural events for migrants and refugees from Venezuela and host communities to promote social cohesion;
  • Conducting of workshops on labour rights and ethical recruitment;
  • Support to key actors, including civil society and private sector, and processes in facilitating credential and/or competency certification for refugees and migrants from Venezuela to contribute towards their economic integration;
  • Implementation of communication campaigns against xenophobia;
  • Distribution of school kits for migrant and refugee children as well as vulnerable children from host communities;
  • Development of an online migrant entrepreneurship course that is available for migrants and refugees at any time; 
  • Support for enrolment in schools and in language classes for migrants and refugees.


Funding required
Plan types

Health system strengthening

To strengthen health systems in host countries, IOM supports interventions aiming to improve capacity among health professionals to respond to needs of migrants, refugees and affected host communities, such as:

  • Provision of training, equipment and medical supplies to health care providers to improve provision of emergency healthcare, sexual and reproductive health, pediatric care and COVID-19 prevention, diagnostics and treatment;
  • Identification of public policies that facilitate or create obstacles for migrants to access health and mental health services;
  • Support for health promotion initiatives at community level, in close coordination with the WASH sector;
  • Advocacy for the inclusion of Venezuelan migrants and refugees in national COVID-19 response plans including vaccination campaigns;
  • Provision of trainings and strengthening of capacities of local actors and health staff to provide medical services to migrants, refugees and indigenous populations.
Funding required
Plan types

National laboratory systems

IOM supports enhanced capacities of laboratory systems through:

  • Provision of COVID-19 PCR and/or antigen tests to approved labs and to Ministries of Health in the region.
Funding required
Plan types

Provision of water, sanitation and hygiene in transitional and post-crisis situations

For sustainable access to water, sanitation and hygiene services, IOM supports initiatives improving infrastructure and building capacity. Protection mainstreaming, including mitigation of GBV risks, will be ensured throughout the interventions. This includes:

  • Installation, renovation, and maintenance of water points in key areas to ensure improved access to safe drinking water and hand washing infrastructures to the benefit of both local communities and migrants and refugees from Venezuela;
  • Improvement of infrastructure and access to water and hygiene services in areas where migrants, refugees and host population live together;
  • Installation of sanitary equipment, such as toilets, latrines and hand washing stations;
  • Capacity building of relevant WASH stakeholders to ensure operation and maintenance of WASH infrastructure and therefore contribute to sustainable access to WASH services.



Funding required
Plan types

Mental health and psychosocial support: dialogue and social cohesion towards recovery and crisis prevention

As a means to strengthen social cohesion and to facilitate integration, IOM will conduct interventions which promote emotional support and psychosocial care activities. This will include:

  • Creation of an online platform to facilitate access to mental health services for children and adolescent migrants, refugees and host communities to ultimately improve their psychosocial wellbeing, promote social cohesion and integration. The platform will reduce the information gap on mental health services and diagnosis, improve quality and access to healthcare services, and strengthen the partnership with local actors;
  • Development of training materials and address mental health care from an intercultural perspective;
  • Provision of psychosocial support through socio-relational and community- based activities for priority population with the aim of strengthening ties between migrants, promoting emotional support among peers, and exchange of information that facilitate the effective integration of migrants (such as musicotherapy, sport, art-based, culinary and recreational activities and cultural events, among others).


Funding required
Plan types

Strengthen preparedness and reduce disaster risk

Funding required
People Targeted
Local population / community
Primary target groups
Description of People and Entities Targeted

Migrants, refugees, host communities, responders to GBV, members of educational institutions.

System strengthening for mental health and psychosocial support

With the objective to strengthen the knowledge and skills of actors responding to survivors of GBV, IOM will:

  • Conduct trainings to improve GBV responders’ capacity in the provision of MHPSS. Trainings will follow the R4V model for supporting survivors and will address (remote) case management, PFA, handling of disclosures and referral systems, among others.


Funding required
Plan types

Water, sanitation and hygiene in preparedness and risk reduction

  • To ensure quality and sustainability IOM will focus on building and strengthening capacities within its WASH interventions. This will include activities such as WASH trainings and group actions targeting migrants, refugees and host communities, as well as training specifically tailored for educational institutions focusing on WASH healthy habits and on the prevention of COVID-19.
Funding required
Plan types

Contribute to an Evidence Based and Efficient Crisis Response System

Funding required
People Targeted
Local population / community
Primary target groups
Description of People and Entities Targeted

Migrants, refugees, host communities, Governments, partners and other stakeholders.

Displacement tracking

To strengthen data on mobility, vulnerabilities and needs, IOM collects and analyses data primarily through its Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM) tool. Activities will include:

  • Track and monitor population mobility through DTM to regularly and systematically capture, process and disseminate information to provide a better understanding of the movements and evolving needs of the Venezuelan population;
  • Reinforce and expand DTM data collection activities such as flow monitoring surveys and mobility tracking, including sub-national level migration data, to get information on changes in flows, vulnerabilities and needs of populations in border, transit and high stock areas, including information on Covid-19 specific vulnerabilities;
  • Consolidate findings and conduct regional analysis to create an overview and improved contextual understanding to guide governments and other relevant actors to better informed decision making and planning.


Funding required
Plan types

Support services for response actors

For improved preparedness and ability to facilitate quicker access to critical supplies, IOM will:

  • Support pipeline management and provision of logistics support to relevant R4V members for the establishment of regional preparedness contingency stocks for health, WASH and shelter relief items;
  • Train and deploy specialized thematic experts to ensure rapid surge support in the region on ad-hoc basis.  
Funding required
Plan types
Operational presence in

Argentina, Aruba, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Curaçao, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guyana, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Trinidad and Tobago, Uruguay


Figures are as of 31 December 2020. For more details of IOM's operational capacity in country, please see the IOM Capacity section.

With thanks to our current donors