Migrant support centers in East and Horn of Africa look to the next three years



Migrant support centers in East and Horn of Africa look to the next three years

The assistance offered includes medical and psychological support, shelter, food, hygiene items, clothing and information for assisted voluntary return and reintegration.

GENEVA, Switzerland, September 24, 2021 / APO Group / –

Migration Response Centers (MRCs) in the East and Horn of Africa, and Yemen, have provided support services to thousands of migrants at a time when COVID-19 has exacerbated the vulnerability of populations in movement.

The pandemic has led to riskier migration routes, reduced livelihoods and increased discrimination for migrants. According to the International Organization for Migration (IOM), in the first eight months of 2021 alone, more than 19,000 migrants passed through the 12 RCMs in Djibouti, Ethiopia, Somalia and Sudan as well as through the Migration Response Point in Aden, Yemen, where they accessed a range of services

In this context, IOM, government representatives and partners agreed on a strategy to improve the coordination and quality of assistance offered by MRCs to migrants in need.

RCMs are located on key migration routes to North Africa and Europe, the Arabian Peninsula and South Africa. The centers allow governments, IOM and other partners to work together to provide support to migrants who find themselves in difficult and sometimes deadly situations.

The assistance offered ranges from medical and psychological support, shelter, food, hygiene items, clothing and information to assisted voluntary return and reintegration.

In September, more than 50 representatives of government agencies, UN agencies, local NGOs, migrant community associations, as well as IOMM staff, gathered to formulate a regional strategy ( 2021-2024) for CRMs in East and Horn of Africa and Yemen.

Three strategic priorities have been identified for the next three years, namely: (1) preventing protection problems, (2) providing quality assistance and protection services, and (3) strengthening sustainability and the comprehensiveness of services through increased involvement of partners. and government ownership.

Yohannes Sissay, Attorney General’s Office in Ethiopia, stressed: “The CRM strategy has a direct bearing on what we have already done as the Ethiopian government. He also expressed the need for a strategy that has buy-in from the RCMs themselves.

Mohamud Jama Muse Eid, Director of MRC Bossaso – one of three MRCs in Somalia – said: “Over the next three years, it is our common obligation to improve migration management systems through inclusive participation. of all partners. We want to create a special coordination platform for all our partners.

In the next step of the process, the partners will meet again for a validation workshop on the regional CRM strategy before its launch.

Ashraf Hassan, Senior Regional Program Officer of the Joint EU-IOM Initiative for the Protection and Reintegration of Migrants in the Horn of Africa (EU-IOM Joint Initiative), said: strategically position CRMs within the comprehensive response to migration in the region, recognizing them as important mechanisms for the coordination and provision of protection and assistance to migrants in vulnerable situations.

Mr. Hassan added: “It is important to note that this process is also an opportunity to redefine and strengthen our partnership to ensure a coordinated and holistic response to the situations faced by migrants in vulnerable situations.

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