AMERA International supports refugees in their search for solutions by assisting and encouraging NGOs and law firms around the world to offer pro bono legal advice on issues relating to asylum determination, settlement of migrants, family reunification and other matters relating to the enjoyment of fundamental human rights.
We advance education, in particular among lawyers and paralegals, in matters relating to forced migration and law affecting refugees globally.
We also seek to support organizations in the provision of psycho-social services for medical legal assessment as well as to enable refugees to present their testimonies at interviews conducted by state authorities or by the staff of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), and to help refugees deal emotionally and mentally with their past and present struggles.
We promote use of tools to support best practice in asylum seeker and refugee case management.
We do this through:
Promoting use of the Refugee Information Processing System (RIPSweb) to standardize case management and create a secure repository of information to assist asylum seekers and legal teams.
Keeping track of an asylum seeker’s case as they move through the labyrinthine of the legal system, wherever they may be in the world, is extremely challenging. Each stage is contingent on the last, each bit of paperwork or interview carries potentially having enormous weight and is open to misinterpretation, and unconnected people often necessarily have to take up a case at different stages, risking confusion of the narrative.
Originally developed in 1995 by Applied Network Solutions (ANS) for the UK Home Office-funded Refugee Legal Centres (RMJ), RIPSweb has helped in the management of up to 25,000 individual cases per year.
It is now freely available as a cloud-based platform built to facilitate the process and can help expose gaps in case management. It offers these features:
a) Registration of clients capturing core client information – allowing you to configure what information you choose to capture
b) Offering each client a range of services e.g. Refugee Status determination (RSD) case preparation, Trafficking, – with details of caseworker for each service
c) Recording activities undertaken with each client for each service
d) Reporting is at client, caseworker, team leader or statistics (for reporting or for funders) level
The following organizations are using RIPS or an adapted form of RIPS –
- Asylum Access (Malaysia, Thailand, Tanzania, Mexico – Spanish version of RIPS, Ecuador )
- UK based refugee organisations
Now updated, it is free to download through http://www.answeb.co.uk/showNew.aspx?a=23
We work closely with legal aid refugee organisations in Africa, the Middle East, South America and the UK to ensure the system is relevant and responsive. Information is held securely on UK based servers and is password protected to prevent misuse of sensitive information.
For a fee, RIPSweb can be configured to meet specific needs, or translated. For further information about RIPSWeb, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
RIPSweb is open to bespoke configuration, it is also flexible and can manage the great variety of cases such as Refugee Status Determination (RSD), minors, SGBT and FGM, as well as detainees, education records and community outreach. Data is stored on and off site to protect against all mishaps.
RIPS Manager tailors information as needed, with references to local contacts and services. For instance, a caseworker involved in Refugee Status Determination can register details of each engagement with a client, can track and review relevant history, or pass it over to another case worker, or team leader for follow up.
Funding and supporting lawyers to work within NGOs and law firms that deal with asylum seekers and refugees, to offer legal aid and training
AMERA International uses its wide network of contacts, experience and knowledge to work with NGOs and organisations that deal with asylum seekers and refugees, and to link them up with fully-funded lawyers for short or long term legal support and training.
Each lawyer comes with solid experience of the sector and has ongoing access to AMERA International’s substantial repository of cases and training.
Promotes International advocacy for asylum seekers’ and refugees’ rights through representation on global boards and organisations.
Members of AMERA International sit on the following boards and organizations:
Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations (ECOSOC MEMBER).
Founding member of The Asia Pacific Refugee Rights Network (APRRN)
Member of the International Council for Voluntary Agencies (ICVA) in Geneva.
Member of the Euro-Mediterranean Foundation of Support to Human Rights Defenders (EMHRF)