It has now been six months since we launched the Global Migrants Project! Thanks to your support, we are improving access to urgent relief services and creating intercultural spaces that connect migrant and local communities.
On 28 June 2018, we organized a meeting between NGOs and government agencies working to reduce the precarity of migrants in Marrakech. Participants highlighted three key challenges that limit their impact. First, poor coordination between organizations working on migration. Second, limited knowledge on the total number and the specific needs of migrants. Third, difficulty in reaching the communities that would benefit from relief services. To overcome these challenges, the Global Migrants Project is launching the Marrakech Migration Platform. This informal entity will facilitate coordination and organize regular meetings between relevant organizations, consolidate the information that they collect on beneficiaries, and create a leaflet with clear information on all available relief services for migrants. Collectively, members of the Marrakech Migration Platform will be able to improve access to healthcare, legal support, job training, education, adequate nutrition and weather appropriate clothing. We are very excited to carry this project forward and proud to work in collaboration with the Moroccan government.
Our intercultural program is also growing rapidly. In our ongoing collaboration with the Museum of Contemporary African Art of Marrakech (MACAAL), we organized an iftar (a meal of great cultural significance in Morocco which happens daily during the month of Ramadan). The event was attended by West African immigrants, Moroccans from diverse socio-economic backgrounds and Europeans living in Morocco. It was important because it allowed diverse communities that rarely meet to interact and network. In addition to continuing our collaboration with MACAAL, we plan on working with the French Institute and with Marrakech based artists and photographers to create multiple intercultural spaces, highlight the importance of diversity, and help migrants overcome the cultural and social barriers that impede their ability to pursue their long-term dreams.
Through the Marrakech Migration Platform and our intercultural program, we are reducing human suffering and helping migrants take control of their own fates. We hope that you will continue supporting us in creating a world that treats all humans with dignity.
Over the last three months we reached out to a broad range of organisations capable of addressing the plight of migrants in Marrakech. We met with local representatives of the Health Ministry and are exploring ways of collaborating to provide medical care to migrants who are undocumented and cannot access the public healthcare system. In collaboration with Clinique Hijra (an organization providing legal support to migrants), we organized a first informal meeting which informed migrants on their rights and pathways to obtaining residency in Morocco. Clinique Hijra is now holding regular information sessions with the support of the Global Migrants Project and other local partners. We are also developing similar collaboration with organisations that have the capacity to distribute healthy meals and appropriate clothing.
In addition to promoting access to basic necessities (legal support, medical care, warm clothing, and healthy nutrition), we held our first intercultural activity: a lunch and tour of the Museum of Contemporary African Art of Marrakech (MACAAL). We invited West and Central African migrants and American and French expatriates who had moved to Morocco. In the end, sixteen individuals from seven countries attended. By bringing this small and diverse group together in celebration of African Art, we were able to create a moment where migrants and non-migrants could interact in a festive atmosphere.
After receiving feedback from those who attended, we understood the importance of creating spaces where migrants can escape social prejudice and daily reminders of the fact that they are in great need. This day did not increase access to basic necessities, but it brought great happiness to all of those who attended. During the visit, Jean from Central Africa expressed, “We pray for the Global Migrants Project to take off and be successful.” At the end of the day Alain from a West African country informed us, “Everyone really enjoyed this day, this activity could be very popular with our community.” Providing happiness is an essential part of our work because it makes difficult daily realities easier to manage and keeps people motivated to seek constructive pathways to building their futures.
None of these activities would be possible without your support. We hope that you will share our work with your friends and colleagues and continue supporting us in the future.
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