Youth Council (NYC) and the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) have
intensified efforts to curb irregular migration in The Gambia with the establishment
of migration information centers in three regions.
The centers are established in Lower River, West Coast and Upper River Regions to provide timely and accurate information on safe migration. Two full time staff are already appointed for each center to deliver service to young people.
The two partners on Monday delivered office materials, including laptops, printer, desks, chairs, projector, air conditioners and a motorbike to the West Coast Region office held at the region’s governor’s office in Brikama. Similar materials were delivered to Lower and Upper River Region offices.
The objective of the centers is to provide timely accurate and relevant information regarding safe migration options, job opportunities and alternatives to irregular migration.
Funded by the European Union through IOM, the centers will be organizing regular information session at the MICs on migration in general and job opportunities in The Gambia, and to enable all Gambians to make informed decisions about migration.
Lamin Darboe, NYC executive director said the centers are supposed to be safer spaces for young people that can offer service in term of information sharing, counselling and other services. “If they become youth friendly, we anticipate that lot of young people will have confident and security to come and discuss matters of concerns to them regarding migration and their own lives which is beyond migration,” he said.
He said the centers will serve as platforms for outreach to allow youth structures on the ground and regional taskforces to be able to conduct outreaches to different communities, share necessary information and document their concerns that can be shared with NYC, IOM and other development partners.
Musa Suso, West Coast Region deputy governor said the centers will help address issues of irregular migration in the country, which he said is of great concern to the Gambia.
He said establishment of the centers will further help to improve government’s capacity and network to deliver timely and relevant information regarding safe migration measures and alternatives to irregular migration.
Etienne Micallef, IOM program manager said the centers will become agents and space for accurate information on migration. “We hope that community members will be empowered to make informed decisions on their journeys, which is the foundation of safe and orderly migration.”