Children in Nicaragua learn about migration with IOM Pedagogical Suitcase
Rivas, Nicaragua. Forty primary school students at the José Antonio Ruiz School, in the city of Rivas, shared a morning of migration-related activities based on the Pedagogical Suitcase developed by the International Organization for Migration (IOM). The event was co-organized with civil society organizations: Save the Children, the Young Women Migrants Group and the Sonia Bello Women's House.
The department of Rivas is located in the border of Nicaragua, approximately 32 kilometers from Peñas Blancas, the Costa Rican border. According to data from the IOM Migration Profile of Nicaragua, Rivas is a department of origin of migrants.
The purpose of the event was to share general concepts about migration with the children and to raise awareness about the risks associated with irregular migration and human trafficking in a dynamic and fun way .
Through the Mesoamerica Program , IOM developed the Pedagogical Suitcase, a set of tools with the purpose of preventing irregular migration and providing information on options for regular, orderly, and safe migration, designed for teachers and young people who want to incorporate the topic of migration into their academic programs and community prevention activities.
During the event, the children received a kit containing games and educational materials, such as a word search about migration, an origami set about human trafficking, a comic strip, a coloring book, and a puzzle, along with other teaching tools. 500 kits were distributed to children as part of this activity, in coordination with Covenant House and the Jesuit Migrant Service in Managua and Chinandega.
The coordinator of GEMAJ, Sheila Reyes, explained that the teaching staff of the José Antonio Ruiz School considered it necessary to address the topic of migration because there are students at the school with migrant parents.
The coordinator of the Mesoamerica Program in Nicaragua, Heydi González, pointed out that according to the Community Diagnostic on Irregular Migration and Human Trafficking (IOM, 2018), children and adolescents represented 44.2 percent of the population at risk of human trafficking, and therefore it is necessary to work to prevent and raise awareness about this crime.