What is the Migrant Advice Portal?

Triage tool

Triage tool

Identifying the right support for asylum seekers, refugees and migrants can be complex. For those seeking support, or the people supporting or advising them, the challenge is not just knowing what types of support are available locally, but also knowing what questions need to be asked to navigate eligibility requirements and find suitable options.

The triage tool helps by prompting a set of easy-to-understand questions about a person’s situation, and then providing a small number of options based on the information provided. A personalised Help Plan containing simple instructions for making contact with any selected options can then be shared electronically, or printed.

The tool is primarily intended to be used by those on the front line of local services across the charity and public sectors. It’s mobile friendly, and can be used on a phone, tablet or PC during a conversation with someone needing support. It can also be used ‘self-service’ by someone looking for support for themselves, in their own language.

There are limitations on what the tool can do. It’s designed primarily to improve the quality of signposting advice, and give those who lack confidence in providing recommendations, a better solution than the usual signposting lists, which do little to help make decisions on what might be best for a person. It can’t however provide immigration advice, or guarantee that the options presented are always best solutions, especially where people have complex situations.

If you have any feedback as to how we can improve the questions or options the triage tool provides, please get in touch.

Practioner area

Practitioner area

The practitioner area is available to any organisations in the local area who support asylum seekers, refugees and migrants. It provides a set of digital tools designed to make communicating with other organisations in the local network, sharing data, and accessing information and reporting insights easy.

Once logged in, you’ll get access to:

Service data publishing tools

If you provide support services, the Portal provides an easy way of communicating any changes to the services you provide, and practical details such as opening hours and current capacity updates to other organisations in the network. Any updates you make also appear in the Triage Tool where relevant.

Service data

Signposting lists

Most organisations will have some kind of signposting list – be that in Excel or a printed document. The challenge with this is that these lists need updating faster than most organisations can keep up with. The Portal provides a better solution – a facility to quickly build your own digital list, using a shared database of locally mapped services. You can still print these lists out if you like, or they can be accessed digitally. The key difference is that when any local provider makes an update to their service information, your list gets updated live, and so does everyone else’s list in the area.

Information sharing & news

Any member can share or publish useful information, resources and news with others in the network. The Portal provides a hub where these resources and information can be easily accessed and searched.

Collaboration tools

Data sharing & reporting insights

A core aim of The Portal is to facilitate better data insights on what needs are faced in the region. The Portal provides data anonymisation tools, that allows participating service provides to take client data from their internal case management systems, automatically remove any personally identifying information to ensure GDPR compliance, and upload it to a shared database within the platform. A set of reporting and data analytics tools are then available to build visual pictures of needs and trends across to region, to support research, funding bids and service design decisions.

Project background

The Migrant Advice Portal was developed as part of the Foundation for Integration Project. The project was led by Birmingham City Council with funding from the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund (AMIF). The project was delivered in partnership with three specialist advice charities: ASIRT, the Central England Law Centre, and the Refugee & Migrant Centre. Triangle Technology designed and developed the platform technology and public website.

The platform was developed over the course of 2022, and was first launched publicly in September 2022.

Foundation for Integration takes a pathway building approach to the provision of information, advice, guidance and integration support for newly arrived migrants in the City, thereby recognising the impact of accessing information, rights and entitlements on wider integration outcomes; in-keeping with a prevention and early action approach to integration by:

If your organisation is within Birmingham and would like to use to portal, you can register here. If your organisation is outside of the Birmingham area, but is interesting in using the Migrant Advice Portal, please get in touch via the contact page as we are looking to replicate this work in other areas of the country.