Lobbying

Doof Vlaanderen

Doof Vlaanderen is a federation of Flemish Deaf organisations lobbying for equality, emancipation and development of deaf people and their language, Flemish Sign Language, in society. As such, Doof Vlaanderen stands up for the uniqueness, rights and well-being of deaf people with regard to all aspects of every day life.

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Unia

Unia fights against discrimination, stands up for equal rights, offers information about discrimination and support in looking for solutions. Discriminatory acts can be based on race, religion or ideologies, disability, age or sexual orientation. In that, Unia is empowered to take up any discrimination against you based on your origin or your deafness.

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Myria

Myria stands up for foreigners’ rights, does research on migration and fights against human trafficking and smuggling. The organisation lobbies for a governmental policy based on knowledge of facts and respect for human rights. You can contact Myria with any (legal) question on migration you may have.

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Minderheden forum

Het minderhedenforum (Platform for Minority Groups) supports ethno-cultural organisations in Flanders and Brussels as well as people with migrant backgrounds. The Minderhedenforum aims at networking and building bridges between the government and external partners, and its member organisations. The organisation’s aim is to inform and persuade policy makers at various levels and, as such, to have an impact on the policy being set ip in order to create an open, democratic and united society. The Minderhedenforum fully includes people with migrant backgrounds in working on its integration policy. In that, migrant people are given a voice.

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Supporting organisations

Vluchtelingenwerk Vlaanderen

Vluchtelingenwerk Vlaanderen (Work for Refugees Flanders) stands up for the rights of refugees and asylum seekers in Flanders. The organisation makes sure that the rights of everyone requesting asylum in Belgium are respected. Also, it supports everyone who is engaged to help reach this goal in coaching and training them.

In Noordwijk in Brussels, asylum seekers are offered a bowl of soup and information on their rights and the conduct of their procedure in the “Startpunt” (‘Starting Point”), on their first day. This orientation is followed by Vluchtelingenwerk providing shelter for asylum seekers through which the latter are handed over to the network of organisations providing shelter.

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Labels: refugees, asylum seekers, shelter

Location: Brussels

 

Caritas

Caritas Vlaanderen supports registered refugees in looking for their first home. Apart from that, the organisation primarily focuses on vulnerable and poor people in Flanders. When you are looking for individual support with regard to these matters, you can rely on Caritas Vlaanderen yourself too.

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Labels: poverty, individual support, housing, refugees

Location: Brussels

 

Fedasil

Fedasil (Federal Agency for Sheltering Asylum Seekers) is responsible for asylum seekers in Belgium and other target groups. When required, Fedasil coordinates the voluntary return of individuals to their countries of origin too.

In its shelters Fedasil meets asylum seekers’ basic needs: the organization offers a bed, sanitation, meals and food in exchange of which the asylum seekers are expected to help keep the common spaces clean and in order. Apart from that, Fedasil supports asylum seekers socially in guidance by a social worker, administratively in managing each one’s file, and legally. Also medical and psychological issues are being treated within the shelter.

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You can find a shelter close to you at here.

Labels: shelter, refugees, asylum seekers

Location: Brussels

 

CAW

The Centrum voor Algemeen Welzijnswerk (CAW) (Centre for General Work on One’s Well-being, CAW) offers support if necessary. You can rely on the CAW for whatever issue you are encountering: personal issues, financial questions, legal questions, a difficult relationshop, family issues, and so on.

Also shelter is offered by the CAW: emergency care, care for women of men in particular, youth care, family care, and shelter during winter time when a refuge is available. If you are looking for shelter, you can find a CAW office close to you at here.

The CAW can be contacted in various ways: you can call or mail the centre or chat with someone within the organisation through its website. Also, you can simply go to (or make an appointment at) an office close to you.

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Labels: general wellfare, shelter

Locations

Locaties

VAPH

The VAPH offers budgets and refunds to people who have a disability for them to be able to pay for care and support that match their needs. The VAPH can provide deaf and hand-or-hearing people with interpreting hours in order for them to be able to pay for an interpreter in private settings.

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Labels: Interpreter

Location: Brussels

CAB Vlaanderen

The Vlaams Communicatie Assistentie Bureau voor Doven (CAB) (Flemish Office for Communication and Assistance for the Deaf, CAB) is responsible for providing interpreters in educational, work and private settings.

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Label: Interpeter

Location: Destelbergen

CGVS

The Commissariaat-generaal voor de Vluchtelingen en de Staatlozen (CGVS) (General Commission for Refugees and Stateless Persons, CGSV) offers protection to refugees who fear persecution, conflicts or violence when they will have returned to their countries of origin. This support is given by doing research on each request for asylum, individually and independently. The CGVS issues certificates and civil status documents to registered refugees and stateless persons, which is a task the commission aims to do in an open, trustworthy and decisive way.

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Labels: asylum application, refugees

Location: Brussels

OCMW

An OCMW, 'Openbaar centrum voor maatschappelijk welzijn' in full (Public Centre for Social Action), makes sure that a number of social services are being carried out in order to ensure each citizen’s well-being.

In Belgium, many people have either insufficient access to resources or not a permanent residence whatsoever. All of them can rely on an OCMW for social support.

Every person who is legally residing in Belgium, has a right to this kind of social support which aims at safeguarding minimum wages for the entire population.

More information is available here or on the website belonging to an OCMW close to you.

Labels: poverty, individual support, housing, general well-being

Location: each town or city has its own OCMW offering a wide range of services.

GTB

GTB is a specialised service belonging to VDAB that supports people with a disability or health problems in finding a job that matches their needs. This support is given by taking a closer look at your talents and interests, and looking for all possible ways to go, i.e. a process which you will be closely involved in. During meetings GTB can provide interpreters itself.

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Labels: work

Location: GTB can be found at a Werkwinkel (i.e. a VDAB office) close to you

 

Cadans

Cadans vzw provides you with support in whatever you need support with. The support given can concern administrative, housing, financial, housekeeping, relational, leisure, educational, health or transport issues. Cadans vzw will assign you a personal coach who will support you along the way, offering directly accessible aid. The latter means you do not have to apply for a personal budget at VAPH beforehand. Instead, the service is being paid for via a system of points. Cadans vzw offers some of its services in Flemish Sign Language.

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Labels: individual support, general well-being

Location: Bruges

Integratie & Inburgering

The Agentschap van integratie en inburgering (Agency of Integration and Naturalisation) is responsible for supporting migrants when integrating in Flanders. This support is given in offering Dutch and Social Orientation Courses as well as answering any questions on your migration procedure you may have. These questions can be with regard to family reunification, your stay in the EU, asylum and protection, regularisation, labour migration, short stay, deportation, residence documents and entering the National Registry, travel documents, right of return, labour and professional cards, social, medical and other rights and obligations depending on your immigration status, acquirement and loss of Belgian citizenship, regularisation and translation of foreign documents, and international family contexts.

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Labels: administration, migration procedure

Location: The headquarters of the agency are in Brussels, but you can also rely on its service at various regional offices.

Rode kruis

The Red Cross is responsible for sheltering asylum seekers and refugees. The organisation manages various shelters where asylum seekers are provided with a meal and a place to sleep. Also, support in going through the asylum procedure is being offered by the Red Cross in giving neutral and correct information, focusing on each resident’s individual journey.

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Labels: asylum application, shelter

Location: shelters

 

Koninklijk instituut woluwe

The Koninklijk Instituut Woluwe (Royal Institute of Woluwe) offers support at home primarily focusing on the language development of deaf and hard-of-hearing children. Adults suffering from a learning disorder can rely on the institute’s services as well. When required, the Institute and you will look for a matching kind of support together.

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Labels: home care, children

Location: Woluwe

KOCA

The Home Care Service belonging to the Koninklijk Orthopedagogisch Centrum van Antwerpen (Royal Orthopedagogical Centre of Antwerp, KOCA) offers easily accessible support to parents, children, youngsters and adults who are deaf, hard-of-hearing, speech or language developmentally disordered. The support can be provided to you at the service’s office or in your own home. During meetings it is possible to use Flemish Sign Language when communicating.

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Labels: home care, children

Location: Antwerp

Atlas

Atlas, Integration and Naturalisation in Antwerp offers information and support to non-native newcomers and organisations in the city of Antwerp. Atlas primarily focuses on teaching Dutch, but you can also rely on the organisation for support in finding a suitable school in the region of Antwerp.

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Labels: learning Dutch, children

Location: Antwerp

Locatie: Antwerpen

Kompas Gent

Kompas Gent supports people who are in nood of support and wish to improve their quality of life. Kompas primarily wants to offer support in housing, labour and leisure. In housing the organisation can provide you with various types of housing: living independently or in a group of people, with or without household assistance. Kompas also manages a shelter home where you can live. You can rent a studio which is basically accessible or enjoy a short stay in a shelter for a maximum of 3 months.

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Labels: work, housing, leisure, shelter

Location: Ghent

Dienst Vreemdelingenzaken

The Dienst Vreemdelingenzaken (Service for Foreigners Affairs) fully engages itself to answer questions of new migrants. The service is involved in issueing visas for a short or longer stay, is responsible for the registration of asylum applications in Belgium as well as the voluntary return or the deportation of persons who are illegally residing in the country. The service’s website offers much information on the various possible procedures, your rights and obligations.

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Labels: refugees, asylum seekers, migration procedure, asylum application

Location: Brussels

VDAB

In Flanders, VDAB (the Flemish Service for Employment and Vocational Training) is the most important service supporting people who are looking for a job. Once registered at the VDAB you can enjoy its various benefits: you will receive suitable job vacancies via e-mail, be supported in judging these job vacancies, qualify for employment premiums and measures, and you will be able to have more opportunities to work by attending specific training programs. To be able to make use of these benefits, you do, however, have to meet the following conditions: you actively have to look for a job yourself, you are not allowed to refuse a matching job, support or training program offered to you by VDAB, you always have to attend meetings with your job counselor and must actively cooperate as well as be available through e-mail and mail.

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Part of the website is made accessible in Flemish Sign Language.

Labels: work

Locations

 

Mobilant

Mobilant offers directly accessible support to persons with a disability: support in administration, relations, education, household, housing, work, leisure, disability issues, and so on.

Mobilant has also employed people who are skilled in Flemish Sign Language. As such, you will not have to be supported by an interpreter when consulting them.

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Labels: general well-being, individual support

Location: Antwerp

WAD

The initiative Welzijns Advies Doven (Advice on Well-being for the Deaf, WAD) aims to make the already existing support accessible for deaf and hard-of-hearing people in the region of West-Flanders. Volunteers working at WAD are all skilled in sign language, trained and coached in supporting deaf people when they are looking for a support service that matches their needs. This service is for free and fully accessible in Flemish Sign Language.

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Labels: general well-being, individual support

Location: /

Medimmigrant

Medimmigrant is active in the Brussels Capital Region and stands up for the right to health care of those who are not legally residing here or whose immigration status is precarious. Medimmigrant wishes to inform these people on medical themes and answer questions on medical issues and needs they may have.

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Labels: asylum seekers, refugees, health

Location: Brussels