IOM and its partners in the region celebrated the International Migrants Day

5 January, 2018

Every 18th of December, the world celebrates migrants. In this opportunity, the United Nations Migration Agency, IOM, did so under the motto ´´safe migration in a world on the move´´.

IOM estimates that one in each seven persons around the world is a migrant, and that only in the American continent there are more than 67 million migrants.

The Organization celebrated the International Migrants Day through a variety of global events, including in many cases the movies projected in the framework of the second Global Migration Film Festival, in more than 100 countries, including the Mesoamerica region.

In Tapachula and Tenosique, southern border of Mexico, IOM projected outdoors the documentary ´´Casa en Tierra Ajena´´ for 200 people between both localities. In Nicaragua and El Salvador, the festival activities were also used to promote MigrantApp, IOM´s application for migrants in the region. On the 19th of December, in Guatemala City, the application was publicly presented in the Museum of Ethnology and Archeology, to approximately 100 people from government, civil society, researchers, universities and migrants, who learned about the uses of the application and the diverse services it references.

As part of the activities organized by the Network of Youth without Border and the Municipality of Desamparados, in Costa Rica, four movies from different parts of the world were projected to an estimate of 100 people. After each movie, IOM also developed a cine forum with special guests such as the director of the documentary Casa en Tierra Ajena, Ivannia Villalobos, and the president of the Domestic Workers Association in Costa Rica, Maria del Carme Cruz Martínez, a Nicaraguan migrant. The Gastro-Cultural Festival Youths of the World was organized parallelly in the central park of Desamparados where diverse artistic and musical groups performed, and migrant and refugee culinary entrepreneurs sold their products.

A week before, the second Bi-national Migrant Fair took place and was organized by institutions and civil society organizations from Costa Rica and Panama in support of the indigenous groups Ngabe Bugle, who continuously migrate across the border, mainly in search of work.

These activities were possible thanks to the support of the Mesoamerica Program, financed by the Department of State of the United States. The Program contributes to the development and implementation of strategies for the promotion of regular, orderly and safe migration, ensuring the adequate protection of migrants.