The project EMV-LII: Empowering Migrant Voices for Local Integration and Inclusion held its kick-off meeting in Graz from 14 to 16 May 2024. The 19 multi-stakeholder partners, including civil society organisations, migrant organisations, and local and regional authorities, gathered to discuss the project’s implementation. The primary goal of EMV-LII is to enhance the development and execution of local integration strategies by strengthening the involvement of migrant organisations, thereby promoting more effective integration at local and regional levels. The first two days were filled with insightful sessions and visits to local migrant initiatives, providing a comprehensive understanding of the integration efforts and challenges in Graz. The integration strategy of the City of Graz was presented, offering a foundational understanding of the local context and approaches to integration.

The final day featured a cultural storytelling afternoon and a city tour, highlighting projects aimed at increasing the visibility of migrants in Graz, such as the festival of migrant associations and the photo exhibition “We Have a Dream.” In addition to visiting a number of migrant initiatives and participating in the socio-cultural programme of the three-day conference, the project participants engaged in numerous discussions aimed at refining the implementation strategies for the three-year project.