This initiative comes after the “need to respond to the increase in the number of migrants who are living and/or working in the parishes closest to the headquarters of the municipality”, which rose from 278 to 607 between 2011 and 2021, according to CENSUS 2021 provisional results. Most migrants coming to the region are from countries which are not part of the European Union.

In order to schedule a physical appointment with CLAIM, which will be open from 09:00 - 12:30 and 13:30 -16:30, on Mondays, the migrants will have to contact the centre by phone (+351 251 708 020) or email. CLAIM’s main aim is to “provide support and general information in various areas, such as regularization, nationality, family reunification, housing, voluntary return, work, health, education, among other everyday issues”, the municipality has said.

A social research carried out by Vila Nova de Cerveira’s Chamber in 2022 revealed that the immigrant population living in the municipality are mostly males with a high level of education and an age range between 20 and 49 years old. Additionally, the same study shows that almost half of the migrants share a house with “other members of the household (spouse, children or parents), most of whom reside in the Union of Parishes of Campos and Vila Meã, which is explained by their job offer in the industrial area, and in the Union of Parishes of Vila Nova de Cerveira and Lovelhe.”

Another initiative presented by the municipality of Vila Nova de Cerveira to support the immigrants coming to Portugal, was the investment in PLA – Portuguese Reception Language – classes which approved “the certification of 74 migrants (level A1-A2) of 11 nationalities, allowing them to revalidate their residence permit.” Portuguese courses, cultural events and parties are crucial for the integration of the migrants in Portugal, the Chamber has said.