Date: 24 October 2019
Place: Ankara, Turkey
On Thursday 24 October 2019, the HOPES project funded by the European Union’s Regional Trust Fund in response to the Syrian Crisis and implemented by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the British Council, Campus France and Nuffic, jointly organised together with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Turkey, the UNHCR’s periodic Higher Education Working Group (HEWG) meeting as well as the fourth and final HOPES National Stakeholders Dialogue at the Metropolitan Hotel, Ankara Turkey.
This two-pronged gathering brought together representatives from the EU delegation, governmental representatives, higher education institutions, and other key stakeholders as well as students to take stock and evaluate engagements and achievements in this sector and to explore further approaches and imminent priorities based on the needs of all involved stakeholders.
The morning session was dedicated to the HEWG meeting and to discussing the main achievements on a national level in the scholarship sector, addressing the next phase and moving forward with ending projects. The afternoon session brought key players with knowledge and programs related to the creation of employment perspectives for Syrian Refugees under Temporary Protection (SuTP) as part of the HOPES National Stakeholders Dialogue entitled ‘Higher Education and the Syria Crisis A view towards the future, creating employment prospects for Syrians’ .
The objective of the dialogue was to explore the future perspectives of refugees from Syria beyond and after higher education by discussing the available employment opportunities for SuTPs within the Turkish context.
Welcome notes were given by Ms. Hande Gürdağ, HOPES Country Manager and Mr. Steven De Vriendt, EU Regional Trust Fund in response to the Syrian Crisis in Turkey, Delegation of the European Union to Turkey.
Mr. De Vriendt discussed the future of the Trust Fund in Turkey and highlighted the EU Delegation’s existing structure in the Higher Education field and their efforts in finding new opportunities for the vulnerable groups. He considered that since the Trust Fund will be fading out in Turkey in 2020, the long-term Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA) will be taking place in the EUD’s structure and will integrate the Turkish government’s requests.
The dialogue included reflections on the major developments and achievements on a national level in the higher education sector related to the Syria Crisis. The gathering also allowed deepening the reflection on lessons learned, recommendations and priorities to improve response mechanisms and interventions in the future.