The International Organization for Migration (IOM), has launched the ‘Only Together We Complete the Picture’ campaign to promote social cohesion and inclusion of migrants in Sudan amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Supported by the Swiss State Secretariat for Migration (SEM) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Italy, the campaign highlights messages of solidarity, acceptance and respect, with the aim of fostering a culture that values diversity and the contribution that migrants bring to Sudanese society, while emphasising how we are all united as human beings.
Sudan continues to be a major source, transit and destination country for migrants from across East and Horn of Africa and West and Central Africa, as well as the Middle East and Asia. It has become home to over one million migrants.
“Social cohesion and integration of migrants in host communities is fundamental for societies to thrive, especially diverse ones such as Sudan. The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated long-standing challenges of social cohesion and has increased the risk of stigma, xenophobia, and discrimination,” said IOM Sudan Chief of Mission, Catherine Northing. “Through this campaign we want to spread a message of solidarity and promote understanding because only through unity can we form a more stable and prosperous society for all.”
The campaign will run for one month and include audiovisual content in English, Arabic, Amharic, Tigrinya, Oromo, Hausa and Somali, representing the main languages spoken by migrants in Sudan. Additionally, street art paintings, SMS messages, radio broadcasts and posters placed in strategic public areas in the capital, Khartoum will be disseminated to maximise the campaigns reach.
Despite its own challenges, Sudan has kept its doors open to people fleeing war, hunger and hardship from a number of neighbouring countries, and continues to be a place of safety for many.
Migrants contribute to fueling growth, filling labour market gaps, and enriching Sudanese society. Although they have played significant roles on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic, they have been more vulnerable to its impacts. The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged the inclusion of migrants and social cohesion in Sudan.
As a result, migrants are faced with substantial challenges, such as stigmatization, demonstrations of discrimination, and xenophobia which can undermine social cohesion within communities and prompt possible social exclusion of certain groups.
IOM Sudan designed a series of promotional materials with the aim of sensitizing citizens about the importance of avoiding stigma, xenophobia, hate speech, gender-based violence (GBV), misinformation and disinformation, and promoting collective solidarity and mutual respect.
This campaign comes as part of a larger programme, falling under IOM’s Migrant Protection and Assistance programme. IOM Sudan provides protection and assistance to migrants in need, including victims of human trafficking, smuggled migrants with protection needs, rejected asylum seekers, migrants in irregular situations for various reasons, stranded migrants and unaccompanied and separated migrant children, and other migrants at risk or subjected to violence, exploitation or abuse.
Assistance is provided through IOM’s Migrant Resource and Response Centres (MRRC) located in Khartoum and Gedaref. A new centre is expected to open in Kassala state in April 2021.
Migrants needing assistance can call the MRRC Helpline at +249 92 240 6622.
For more information please contact, Lisa George, Communications and Media Officer, IOM Sudan Email: IOMSudanmedia@iom.int