What is Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration – AVRR?
Migrants who no longer can or no longer wish to stay in Germany and who are unable to finance their return to their country of origin themselves, have the opportunity to receive organizational and financial support. This is known as ‘Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration´. It is supported by the federal and state funded REAG/GARP programme. Irregular and regular immigrants, rejected asylum seekers, refugees, displaced persons, and other individuals can also apply for AVRR. In general, the eligibility for AVRR depends on an applicant´s nationality, financial situation and legal status. If applicable, financial start-up assistance before departure, as well as reintegration support in the destination country through the StarthilfePlus programme can also be provided.
What is the difference between voluntary return and forced return/deportation?
Voluntary Return is when a person decides voluntarily, to return to their country of origin or to migrate to a third country.
Forced Return (deportation) is when a person, after being notified that they are under a legal obligation to leave a host country, is forcedly conducted to his or her country of origin by the local legal authority. This might happen if one’s petition for asylum was rejected or if an asylum seeker was only entitled to temporary protection and was given a time limit for leaving the county.
Where can a migrant who is interested in assisted voluntary return get information on AVRR?
There are more than 900 return counselling centres in Germany that can assist with voluntary return and reintegration. Use the search tool on the website to find a return counselling center close to you and to get information about voluntary return. Search for a return counselling center by clicking on www.returningfromgermany.de/en/centres
What happens at a return counselling session?
At a return counselling session, migrants interested in voluntary return can discuss their personal situation to find out about the individual support options that are available to them. Return counsellors provide information about the financial and organizational support options for departure and possible reintegration. When a decision to return voluntarily is made, the application has to be completed on-site together with the return counsellor. Return counselling is individual, non-binding and unbiased. It does not oblige you to leave Germany and does not affect your asylum procedure.
Can programme services be used partially?
No, partial services cannot be granted under the REAG/GARP programme.
Is there a legal right to assisted voluntary return and reintegration services?
No, there is no legal entitlement to assistance.