Asia and Pacific Regional Office
UNOPS Asia and the Pacific regional office have been involved in Human Resources Management for UNHCR since 2005. UNOPS has supported the recruitment of local personnel and has carried out administrative processes for the appointment of highly qualified personnel for UNHCR’s resettlement programme in Malaysia. In Thailand, UNOPS provides human resources to handle the resettlement requirements for UNHCR’s durable solutions programme on the Thai-Myanmar border, which is one of the largest operations in the region.
In Nepal, over 100,000 Bhutanese refugees settling in camps along ethnic and caste lines are under UNHCR mandate. Working with the Government of Nepal, UNHCR is coordinating with other resettlement countries on resettlement efforts. Starting in 2008, UNOPS’s role is to provide contract management and human resources advisory support for this multi-year resettlement programme. This includes administering salaries, medical insurance and leave entitlements.
Democratic Republic of the Congo
In order to gain more information about the needs of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, an inter-agency profiling project funded by the United Nations High Commissioner of Refugees (UNHCR) and executed in close collaboration with the World Food Programme (WFP) was launched in the IDP camps in North Kivu Province. Since February 2009 the project has been implemented by UNOPS.
The DRC Ministry of Agriculture, as well as local and international NGOs, collaborate in the on-going exercise. Profiling involves learning more about individuals displacement history, areas of origin, family composition, and vulnerabilities. This allows UNHCR and partners to better plan and deliver humanitarian assistance.
The profiling exercise is expected to continue until 2010 and build on its success in North Kivu by extending its activities to South Kivu and Province Orientale, where armed attacks on civilians have caused massive population displacement.
Working in partnership with the Government of Iraq’s Ministry of Displacement and Migration and with the funding of the United Nations Development Group Iraq Trust Fund, UNOPS supported a UNHCR initiative aimed at enhancing the capacity of Iraq’s national, regional and local authorities to support IDPs. The project helped develop a draft national policy on IDPs through consultation with communities and by surveying IDP intentions. The project successfully enabled communities impacted by displacement to peacefully resolve conflict by providing learning programs on dispute resolution throughout the country. The project was completed in December 2008.
UNHCR in Jordan is implementing different types of projects that require specialist and support staff as part of their program to respond to refugee needs. In June 2009 UNOPS was chosen as the implementing partner by UNHCR to provide human resources management services and to contract staff under the Individual Contractor Agreement (ICA) in Jordan. This agreement ends in December 2009, and preparations are in progress to extend it into 2010.
UNOPS Kenya Operations Center has been administering local ICAs for the UNHCR Kenya Office since 2005 as part of a human resources agreement, with a total of 71 personnel administered in 2009. The UNHCR personnel provide assistance to refugees from the region in the Kakuma and Dadaab areas of Kenya.
In partnership with the Government of Liberia, UNHCR selected UNOPS to implement the physical infrastructure component of the Rule of Law project for the country. In 2008, four police compounds were constructed on behalf of the Liberian National Police to serve the rural counties of Grand Bassa, Maryland, Grand Gedeh and Lofa. Each compound included an office building, a barracks and the installation of electrical, sewer and water supply lines.
Two Magisterial Court buildings were constructed in Margibi and Grand Gedeh counties with facilities including water wells with handpumps at both locations. Offices for the Liberian Bureau of Immigration and Naturalization and the Liberia Repatriation, Resettlement and Reintegration Commission were completed in Harper, Maryland County near the border with Côte D’Ivoire and in Bo-Waterside, Grand Cape County near the border with Sierra Leone. This infrastructure has strengthened the rule of law throughout the country and has enabled the smooth return and reintegration of Liberians.
In order to provide shelter for tens of thousands of IDPs and working in partnership with the Government of Sri Lanka, UNOPS supported construction of temporary shelters from pre-assembled ‘emergency shelter kits,’ in the northern region of Vavuniya. The UNOPS water and sanitation team provided emergency toilets and site drainage for the relief camp. The project was funded by UNHCR and the UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF). UNOPS is the largest provider of emergency shelters in Sri Lanka and UNHCR’s main partner for implementing shelters in the country.
The UNHCR programme in response to refugee needs in Syria has a number of projects that require specialist and support staff. UNOPS Iraq Operations Centre is providing human resource management services to UNHCR and is responsible for contracting staff under the Individual Contractor Agreement (ICA) to support these projects.
Led by the Government of Zambia and supported by UNHCR as well as wide range of donors, the Zambia Initiative was a multisectoral programme aimed at alleviating the effects of food deficit, poor infrastructure and limited access to public services and economic opportunities. In the process it aimed at finding durable solutions for the nearly 500,000 refugees in the region. The Initiative carried out local development activities by getting the refugee and local communities to work together in order to foster integration. UNHCR was provided with technical, administrative and logistical support by UNOPS for the duration of the project. UNOPS was also responsible for hiring the programme manager for the Initiative as well as playing a key consultative role in the management structure.