On Nov. 20, SDA took part in a seminar organised by the Foundation Access to Rights in Sofia for representatives of state and non-governmental organizations on new changes in the legal and administrative procedures regarding stateless persons. The event provided a forum for frontline practitioners, researchers and legal professionals to discuss various issues and obstacles to the successful integration of refugees in Bulgaria. S. Gabova from SDA attended the meeting and shared ideas and lessons learned from the INTEGRA project. For many of the participants, the project approach, namely, cooperating with city authorities to aid the implementation of policy and practical measures for migrant integration opens up new opportunities to tackle bottlenecks in critical areas such as access to information, public services, security and safety, institutional collaboration.
On November 15, 2019 a final meeting of the INTEGRA local stakeholder group was held to evaluate the achievements and to plan follow-up activities for the integration of third-country nationals (TCN) in Sofia. The meeting was attended by the participants in the local stakeholders integration group (SIG), the public mediator of Sofia Municipality, representatives of municipal committees, representatives of UNHCR, BCRM, IOM, non-governmental organizations. Sevdalina Voinova, SDA Project Coordinator, presented the creative tools developed by the project partners - they include videos, handouts for organizing debates and discussions, electronic and paper versions of a card game on migration, calendars, and more. The resources are freely accessible and can be used by different target groups - municipal officials, NGOs, teachers, refugee organizations - for training, awareness-raising, involvement in civic initiatives. In Sofia, INTEGRA concludes the two-year project with a very good synergy between SDA, Sofia Municipality (SM), UNHCR, the academic community and a network ready to continue the efforts for migrants integration.