Championing Migrants’ Integration in Colombia .

Economic Growth and Trade | Democracy and Governance | Cross-Sector Development | Local Governance and Decentralization | Stabilization and Transition Assistance
Latin America and the Caribbean

USAID/Colombia Venezuela Response and Integration

Project Dates: August 2021 - August 2028

USAID/Colombia designed the Venezuela Response and Integration (VRI) activity to work with the Colombian government, private sector, and migrant community to respond to these challenges and co-create the institutional, economic, and social architecture of inclusive prosperity.


More than 2 million Venezuelans have migrated to Colombia since 2016, fleeing social, economic, and political hardship in search of employment and essential services. This massive population influx, coupled with sizeable numbers of Colombian returnees displaced by 50 years of armed conflict, has acutely strained public and private services and systems, particularly in urban areas and border towns with high concentrations of migrants. At the same time, the COVID-19 pandemic has depleted fiscal reserves, reduced private sector risk tolerance, and aggravated xenophobia, further threatening to destabilize receptor communities.

USAID/Colombia designed the Venezuela Response and Integration (VRI) activity to work with the Colombian government, private sector, and migrant community to respond to these challenges and co-create the institutional, economic, and social architecture of inclusive prosperity. VRI serves as an umbrella delivery mechanism under which USAID/Colombia issues individual task orders to strengthen governance, combat xenophobia, and increase formal economic opportunities for migrants, returnees, and receptor communities.

The first task order, the Migration Management Activity, or Integra, strengthens Colombia’s governance capacity and service delivery systems and provides a behavioral science-based strategic communications platform for VRI to combat xenophobia. The second task order, Migrant Economic Integration Activity, supports migrant economic participation by aligning the skills of migrants with private sector needs, catalyzing investment in migrant workers and entrepreneurs, and ensuring a supportive policy environment.

By supporting the Colombian public and private sectors to strengthen public systems and catalyze migrant economic participation, VRI will improve socioeconomic integration and stability in areas impacted by migration.

Photo Credit: Hanz Rippe and Fernanda Pineda for USAID/Colombia.

Project Goals


  • Strengthen Colombian governance capacity and public systems at the national, departmental (provincial), and municipal levels to provide quality services to migrants, Colombian returnees, and receptor communities.
  • Expand economic opportunities in receptor communities to better integrate and increase the participation of migrants in the formal economy.
  • Expand availability of specialized services related to migrant and receptor community needs, such as citizen security, urban planning, infrastructure, and customized support to diverse groups, including youth.