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Online portal on voluntary return starts pilot phase

On May 11, 2017, www.ReturningfromGermany.de started its pilot phase at a press conference with IOM Germany Chief of Mission Monica Goracci, Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry of the Interior Dr. Ole Schröder and Head of the Returns Division at the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees Dr. Patrick Schmidtke. IOM Germany Spokesperson Sabine Lehmann presented the portal and IOM AVRR counsellor Sanela Selimagic reported on the daily work in a counselling centre.

"Returning from Germany" addresses migrants who consider returning voluntarily as well as return counselling centres by serving as a one-stop-shop for all necessary information on Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration (AVRR). Migrants can learn about available voluntary return and reintegration programmes, find the nearest return counselling centre and receive practical information regarding their country of origin. Due to the simple design and the planned translation into several languages, it is easily accessible. The portal has been developed by IOM and is a joint project with BAMF.

Conference on assisted voluntary return in Potsdam 

IOM-Rückkehrberater/innenIOM return counsellors

 

The IOM voluntary return and reintegration projects were the focus point of the conference held on April 13th, 2016 in Potsdam. IOM return counsellors described the available reintegration programs, as well as the modalities of voluntary returns. Several actors from Brandenburg were present, among them employees of Foreigners' authorities, refugee housing, civil society organizations and NGOs. The conference was also used as an opportunity to discuss the topic of voluntary return in Brandenburg and gain some feedback from actors whor are in touch with potential returnees. 

The information and return counselling centre in Brandenburg was founded in 2015. Migrants can receive counselling in Eisenhüttenstadt or by calling the counselling centre in order to get more information about available voluntary return programs and the modalities of a return to their country. Contact details and more information can be found here.

IOM Germany completes course on gender equality

IOM Germany's staff completed the course „I know Gender - An Introduction to Gender Equality“, which was developed by UN Women. Gender equality is one of IOM’s guiding principles and is vital to the organization’s success to assist migrants and their families worldwide. The course goals are to build awareness and understanding of gender equality and to enable staff to integrate a gender perspective into their everyday work. At the staff retreat in Nurember on the 1st of December IOM Germany’s employees proudly presented their "I know Gender" certificates.

The course is available here in English, French and Spanish.

IOM discussing the migration crisis with German Foreign Minister Steinmeier at Round Table

IOM Director General William Lacy Swing met with Federal Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier on the 4th of November for a discussion on international cooperation in the current refugee and migration crisis. Besides DG Swing, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterrez, UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General Peter Sutherland and the Secretary General of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement Elhadj As Sy participated in the meeting at the Federal Foreign Office in Berlin. At the press conference after the meeting, DG Swing thanked Minister Steinmeier for his leadership and political courage in the refugee crisis and emphasized that the international community had the obligation, but also an interest in promoting human mobility.

Opening of the IOM Global Migration Data Analysis Centre - GMDAC Berlin

On 7th September 2015, the IOM Global Migration Data Analysis Centre was inaugurated in Berlin.

In its 157 Member States and more than 480 locations worldwide, IOM constantly gathers a wealth of data on global migration issues. The IOM Global Migration Data Analysis Centre will collect this information centrally and publish timely analysis on migration issues. With the GMDAC, IOM responds to the increase in calls for better collection and use of migration data on a range of issues such as displacement, returns and resettlement of refugees, human trafficking and smuggling as well as labour migration.

Ambassador William Lacy Swing (IOM Director General), Jill Helken (IOM Director International Cooperations) and Frank Laczko (Head of the GMDAC Berlin)
Ambassador William Lacy Swing (IOM Director General), Jill Helke (IOM Director International Cooperations) and Frank Laczko (Head of the GMDAC Berlin)


IOM DG Swing with Chief of Mission Argentina Szabados

Activities of the GMDAC Berlin:

  • Analysis of global migration trends: regular publication of up-to-date information
  • Thematic global reports e.g. on migrant fatalities, public perceptions of migration, etc.
  • Migration Governance Index in cooperation with the Economist Intelligence Unit
  • Annual statistical overview of IOM activities
  • Data capacity building in the Member States to collect and process data: training and guidance materials
  • Advocacy through migration data partnerships

Find more information on the GMDAC under gmdac.iom.int as well as in this brochure.

Read the official press release on the opening of the GMDAC Berlin here.

Article of Argentina Szabados published in IPG journal: "Migration is inevitable - and that's good!"

The Chief of the IOM mission in Germany, Argentina Szabados, calls for safe migration routes and an effective fight against human smuggling. “We need an EU-wide initiative to receive refugees from conflict areas that goes far beyond existing commitments.” Read the article from 9th Setpember 2015 in the German journal on international politics and society (IPG) here.

International Career Fair 2015

On January 24th 2015, the German Federal Foreign Office hosted the 10th annual International Career Fair at its premises in Berlin. The fair caters to students, graduates and professionals interested in an international career. Representatives from around 50 International Organizations and international trainee programs used this opportunity to introduce themselves through presentations, podium discussions and information booths to a wide audience.

The presentation delivered by Dyane Epstein, Head of IOM’s Talent Management Unit in Geneva, informed interested visitors about international internship and working opportunities within IOM. Visitors took the chance to receive first-hand information on career opportunities, recruitment procedures, working conditions, current vacancies and internships. In addition to IOM, various United Nations organizations (e. g. UNDP, UNICEF, UNHCR, UNESCO, ILO, the World Bank, WFP and WHO), were also represented at the fair. This year, IOM again presented the global IOM Campaign on the Contribution of Migrants which was received very favorably by the visitors.

 

It’s amazing what migrants bring. New skills. New ideas. New points of view. When people move to new countries, they bring a lot more than a suitcase. And what they bring can benefit everyone. Find out more about the contribution of migrants at www.migrantscontribute.com

 

60 years of cooperation between Germany and IOM

Director General Swing receives Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany

William Lacy Swing and Thomas de Maizière at the joint press conference. Source: Federal Ministry of the Interior

Federal Minister of the Interior Dr. Thomas de Maizière on 3 November 2014 received the Director General of the International Organization for Migration (IOM), William Lacy Swing, for consultations in Berlin.

De Maizière and Swing recognized the 60 years of cooperation between the Federal Republic and IOM and underlined the significance of the cooperation at national and international levels, in particular concerning current issues of humanitarian assistance in crises, on resettlement and in facilitating voluntary return and reintegration of migrants in their countries of origin.

“With its expertise, decades of experience and worldwide network of missions, IOM is an outstanding partner in all questions and challenges of worldwide migration. In the current crises, it has proved to be a reliable and competent partner in emergency humanitarian aid.

Director General Swing, I would like to express my admiration for your organization and the good work it does around the world, often under the most difficult conditions in crisis regions. I am especially grateful to you for the good cooperation on resettlement, the reception of Syrian refugees and on voluntary returns and reintegration.”, said Federal Minister of the Interior de Maizière. (here you can read the full article)

IOM DG William Lacy Swing and the Chief of Mission of IOM Germany
Mrs. Argentina Szabados

The trustful cooperation is to be continued and developed further. 

On November 3rd, marking 60 years of partnership and cooperation, high level consultations between IOM and the Federal Republic of Germany commenced. These high-level consultations will continue in an annual rotation between Berlin and Geneva in the future.

“In a world of globalization, demographic change and growing mobility propensities, it is increasingly clear that good migration governance can bring vital benefits to many. It is in this context that the government of Germany and IOM agreed to hold annual high level consultations to further deepen the long-standing and strong relationship with the aim to foster dialogue and cooperation about comprehensive migration policies and related operational matters. I wish to express my gratitude to the Federal Minister of the Interior, Dr. Thomas de Maizière, who initiated these consultations between the responsible German ministries and IOM.”, says IOM Germany’s Chief of Mission, Mrs. Argentina Szabados.

OM DG Swing receiving the award from Federal Minister of the Interior de Maizière. Source: Federal Ministry of the Interior

On the occasion of the meeting marking 60 years of partnership, the Federal Minister of the Interior, on behalf of Federal President Joachim Gauck, presented the Order of Merit 1st Class of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany to Director General Swing.

In doing so, Dr. de Maizière expressly acknowledged the long-standing, exemplary personal commitment of Ambassador Swing in humanitarian issues.

 

IOM DG Swing receiving the award from Federal Minister of the Interior de Maizière. Source: Federal Ministry of the Interior

Further events on November 3rd to mark 60 years of Germany’s membership in IOM, 60 years of IOM Germany and 60 years of successful collaboration and partnership between Germany and IOM included a joint press conference between the Director General and Federal Minister of the Interior, Dr. Thomas de Maizière, a hearing before relevant committees of the German Federal Parliament under the lead of the Parliamentary Committee for Human Rights and Humanitarian Aid, and a joint reception between the Federal Ministry of the Interior and IOM to mark 60 years of partnership, which was opened by Parliamentary State Secretary Dr. Ole Schröder.

While in Berlin, the Director General also launched a book entitled “Saving lives and Building Livelihoods: Germany and IOM”, which celebrates long-standing and excellent cooperation between Germany and IOM across a broad scope of migration issues and exemplifies this with a summary of the joint migration initiatives of the past three years. An electronic version of the publication can be accessed here.

Commemoration of the 1st World Day against Trafficking in Persons 30 July 2014

The Embassy of the Belarus invited ambassadors, international organizations and NGOs in order to commemorate the first world day against trafficking in persons at their premises in Berlin.

After the welcoming address by Sergei Malinovky, charge d’affaires of the embassy, the Chief of Mission of IOM Germany, Mrs. Argentina Szabados, opened the round of presentations with an introduction into the global perspective on human trafficking. The most recent research estimates the yearly global profits from forced labor at 150 billion US-Dollar. The long standing experience of IOM in counter trafficking was also a key aspect of her speech. As a way forward, IOM proposes three points where more efforts are needed: The identification of vulnerable migrants, the sensitization of the private sector as well as the need for more effective prosecution.

Mr. Stephan Lanzinger from the Human Rights Division of the German Federal Foreign Office presented the international efforts of Germany in combatting trafficking in persons to the audience. Mrs. Bärbel Heide Uhl from the German Network and Coordination Office against Human Trafficking related the experiences of NGOS working with victims of trafficking in Germany. Mr. Ivan Alievich from the Embassy of Belarus spoke about the very active role that the Republic of Belarus assumes in the fight against human trafficking both on the national and international level. A short documentary about the situation in Belarus completed the official part.

IOM Germany brings the global campaign “The Contribution of Migrants” to the Hanseatic region

On 23 May 2014, IOM Germany presented the new global IOM campaign “The Contribution of Migrants” at the International Economic Symposium in the hanseatic city of Lübeck. The Business Forum is an integral part of the International Hanseatic Convention 2014 (22-25 May), which attracted more than 400,000 visitors this year.

During the International Economic Symposium, renowned speakers and high-ranking forum participants discussed the topic “Labour market and demographic change in the Hanseatic region”. The Director of IOM Germany, Argentina Szabados, was a panelist in the panel discussion “Living and working in the Hanseatic region – Migration as an opportunity” together with Duncan Campbell (ILO Geneva), Özlem Ünsal (Ministry of the Interior of Schleswig-Holstein) and Markus Dusch (Federal Employment Agency Lübeck). Further information about the Symposium is available here.

One of the main purposes of the annual International Hanseatic Convention is to strengthen the international exchange of its member cities and to contribute to addressing pressing issues. During the business forum, participants welcomed the IOM campaign with great interest and broad consent, since it reduces prejudices and highlights the positive contributions of migrants.

It’s amazing what migrants bring. New skills. New ideas. New points of view. When people move to new countries, they bring a lot more than a suitcase. And what they bring can benefit everyone. Find out more about the contribution of migrants at www.migrantscontribute.com

 

PRUMA National Stakeholder Meeting

The first national stakeholder meeting of the PRUMA-project took place in Berlin on 08.05.2014. Following an invitation of IOM Germany and Federal Association for Unaccompanied Minor Refugees (B-UMF), representatives of the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees, the UNHCR, the German Red Cross, the International Social Service, the Workers Welfare Association, Jesuit Refugee Service and the German Institute for Youth Welfare and Family Law discussed ways to improve the family reunification process of unaccompanied minors within the European Union. The venue was provided by the International Social Service.

 

The Federal Minister of the Interior receives the Director General of IOM

The topics of exchange were the continuation of the previous good cooperation and joint efforts for a swift implementation of refugee admission programmes, especially from the crisis region surrounding Syria.

The Federal Minister of the Interior de Maizière underlined that IOM had been a reliable partner within the humanitarian emergency aid from the very beginning. He expressed his appreciation to Director General Swing for the good work of IOM globally, in particular under difficult conditions in crisis regions, and thanked the Director General especially for the good cooperation on resettlement and admission of Syrian refugees. On the basis of the joint Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation of 2011, the successful partnership will be continued for the future.

Further information on the visit of the Director General of IOM Mr William Lacy Swing to the Federal Minister of the Interior Dr. Thomas de Maizière can be found here.

 

IOM Deputy Director General visits Germany

IOM Deputy Director General Ambassador Laura Thompson officially visited the Federal Republic of Germany for the first time on March 11th, 2014. Together with Frank Laczko, Head of IOM’s Migration Research Division at Headquarters in Geneva, she spoke at an expert meeting in Berlin on “International cooperation in migration management: The challenge of knowledge gaps”. The event was organized and co-hosted by IOM and the renowned Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik (German Institute for International and Security Affairs - SWP).

Frank Laczko introduced the “IOM-Gallup Global Migration Programme” to a broad audience of German migration experts for the first time ever. The programme is an initiative for the establishment of a global migration data centre with the aim to improve the availability and accuracy of data on global migration significantly. Ambassador Laura Thompson emphasized the growing importance of international cooperation on migration and the related increased need for up-to-date and reliable data for policy makers around the globe.

After the event, Ambassador Thompson met with the Federal Ministry of the Interior, the Federal Foreign Ministry and the Berlin Senate Administration of the Interior and for Sports.

For more information about the Deputy Director General of the International Organization for Migration please visit http://www.iom.int/cms/ddg.

 

International Career Fair

On February 1st 2014, the German Federal Foreign Office hosted the annual International Career Fair at its premises in Berlin. The fair was targeted towards a wide audience of students, graduates and professionals interested in an international and European career. More than 5.600 visitors to the fair used this opportunity to meet representatives of 45 International Organizations and EU Institutions and receive first-hand information on career opportunities, recruitment procedures, current vacancies and internships.

IOM contributed to the fair both with a booth and through a presentation delivered by Liliana Mircescu, Head of IOM’s Staff Development and Training Unit in Geneva, about the Organization and career opportunities. The Organization’s booth was fully booked throughout the day and visitors showed a great interest in the Organization as well as the Global IOM Campaign on the Contribution of Migrants. Both according to the MFA as hosts of the fair, and measured according to the individual feedback from fair participants and representatives of the other participating organizations alike, IOM’s booth was the most popular and most liked booth at the fair. In particular the global IOM Campaign on the Contribution of Migrants, which was for the first time presented publicly in Germany on the occasion of the fair, was met with great enthusiasm.

The slogan of the campaign is: 

It’s amazing what migrants bring.

New skills. New ideas. New points of view. When people move to new countries, they bring a lot more than a suitcase. And what they bring can benefit everyone. Find out more about the contribution of migrants at www.migrantscontribute.com.

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
"IOM Missions’ achievements around the globe continue to record impressive statistics… and we must use this data more often and more effectively."
William Lacy Swing,
IOM Director General