Europe is facing a huge humanitarian crisis. According to the official data of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, millions of refugees have already been forced to flee the war in Ukraine moving to neighbouring countries, while many people have been displaced internally within Ukraine. In the coming months, several million Ukrainian refugees will need protection and assistance in European countries.
The EU must welcome refugees from Ukraine, offering safety, protection and support. The European adult learning and education (ALE) community, including adult learners, educators and leaders, are ready to provide any necessary help to everyone fleeing the war. Counting on the long-standing experience of adult education actors in welcoming and empowering newcomers, EAEA reiterates the important role that non-formal ALE can fulfil in supporting refugees, in particular, to:
- Foster solidarity and create bonds between refugees and the local communities;
- Facilitate the integration of refugees in the host countries, also by strengthening their linguistic, cultural and life skills to help them navigate their new environment;
- Allow refugees to continue their learning pathway, also by providing a bridge towards formal education and validating prior learning;
- Enable parents and refugees with caregiving responsibilities to better support children, older adults, persons with disabilities and other people in a condition of vulnerability in the integration process.
For the recommendations to policymakers, please consult the statement through the link above.