Most critically to our vision, refugees and migrants were involved at every step of project development, and by taking this bottom-up approach we were able to build a programme of activities which considered what each city must do in order to achieve MiFriendly status.
We believe in a two-way integration process, which is multi-faceted, multi-layered and which takes into account the whole community. From the grassroots upwards, we aimed to encourage citizens across the community work with local businesses, government, and voluntary organisations to build a Migration Friendly region together.
While some activities were tailored to specific groups, our overall programme involved a broad range of residents in the region, including a wide range of people who define themselves as ‘migrant’.
Our 3-year project was shaped and developed as it progressed by the communities involved, to create a culture of inclusion and friendliness, with the West Midlands becoming a region in which all of its citizens feel a true sense of belonging
In a MiFriendly City, everyone is encouraged to become an active citizen, training and employment opportunities are created, and the contributions of refugees and migrants are supported, enhanced and recognised.
The foundations of the project focused on jobs, skills, citizenship, start-ups, and long-term community investment. By working in these areas we can empower our communities to come together and drive change at both city and regional levels.
This project is co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund through the Urban Innovative Actions Initiative.