User:Luisbernardo.estagio/Portuguese Refugee Council
The Portuguese Refugee Council (PRC) is the only NGO in Portugal exclusively working with refugees and asylum seekers. It provides legal and psychosocial advisory and support upon arrival, as well as longer-term counselling in areas as diverse as employment and language training. The PRC is also invested in raising public awareness, namely in the educational sphere. As a central stakeholder in Portuguese asylum policy, it maintains close contact with the Portuguese Government, it has been since its inception a partner of UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and it is a a member of ECRE, the European Council on Refugees and Exiles. Since 2006, the Council has managed a Reception Centre, the first purpose-built infrastructure of its kind in Portugal. It has been a landmark in the Council's history.
The Portuguese Refugee Council was founded in 1991, with the specific aim of providing for the needs of refugees and asylum seekers in Portugal. UNHCR had an office in Portugal at the time. In 1993, it was fully recognized as a nonprofit organization. It has been since 1998 officially recognized as a NGDO (Non-governmental Development Organization), widening its scope and allowing for both a fuller lobbying position within the stakeholder constellation around Portuguese asylum policy and a deeper investment in awareness raising and education. In 2000, it received the Human Rights Award of the Portuguese Parliament, one of the first and few NGOs in Portugal to be honored in such a way. Negotiations towards new asylum legislation, besides negotiations towards the building of a purpose-built Refugee Reception Centre, further established the Portuguese Refugee Council as one of the key actors in the area as well as an important organization in the context of Portuguese civil society.
The main concern of the Council