In the past two days, JRS Europe team along with the national directors from the 22 JRS Offices around Europe held the second virtual Regional Coordination Meeting of 2020.
The meeting opened with a reflection on reconciliation. JRS International’s expert staff members presented the work that JRS carries out worldwide in different geographic contexts about reconciliation, with an approach that prioritize the capacity building and, above of all, the recreation of relationships among the different groups.
They also invited the whole JRS European network to think about the concept’s applicability in Europe, which led to the recognition of the necessity to deconstruct racism and stereotypes within the host communities as well as among the refugees’ ones.
JRS Europe’s updates on advocacy, communications and programmes
The discussions moved toward another current important topic on the migration agenda: the newly proposed EU Pact on Asylum and Migration. Claudia Bonamini, JRS Europe’s Policy and Advocacy Officer, presented and analysed the legislative measures contained in the proposal, which raised several doubts and concerns about the sufficient level of protection of the refugees’ rights.
The JRS Europe’s staff members presented recent updates in their respecting working areas, such as communications and programmes, highlighting important spaces for cooperation.
JRS Europe’s Regional Director showed a presentation on how to ensure the wellbeing of JRS staff during these challenging and worrying times of physical distance, which was followed by an open discussion among the participants.
A special Annual General Meeting
Finally, the day ended with the 2020 Annual General Meeting. Despite the impossibility to meet in person, over 150 staff members and volunteers of the JRS offices all around Europe managed to celebrate the 40 years anniversary of JRS by gathering together online, dressing in blue and sharing what JRS means for them.
* The Regional Coordination Meeting is generally held for two days twice a year, once in Brussels and one in another European country where JRS is present. However, given the current travel restrictive measures caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, also the second reunion of 2020 was held entirely online.