Assessment of the situation of organisations and initiatives of people with migrant and refugee experience in Poland. Research report
The dynamic increase in the number of people coming to Poland and their interest in settling down in the country has stimulated the discussion on the deepening of ethnic differentiation of Polish society and the social and political participation of migrants.
According to the data of the Office for Foreigners, the number of migrants deciding to settle in Poland is constantly increasing. This pertains particularly to the citizens of Ukraine, Belarus, Georgia and India. According to the statistical data of the Office for Foreigners, in 2021 the number of submitted applications for a residence permit (temporary, permanent and long-term resident) increased by 39% compared to the previous year.
Along with the increase in the number of migrant communities, we are also observing a greater social and political engagement of community leaders and the emergence of new migrant or refugee organisations and initiatives. They take over a lot of tasks related to aid, counselling and integration support. Since 2020, the organisations of the Belarusian diaspora have assumed a particularly active role in the support and political representation of the interests of Belarusians in Poland.
This report was finalized during the period of Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine, which showed the crucial role played by migrant organisations in a crisis situation, especially those led by the Ukrainian diaspora. The know-how of the local conditions and language offered by these organisations as well as understanding the needs of newcomers turned out to be of key importance.