International Organization for Migration announces essay and multimedia competition in partnership with the Department of Home Affairs

Date Publish: 
Thursday, November 3, 2016


The International Organization for Migration (IOM) is proud to partner with the Department of Home Affairs for the 2016 Mkhaya Migrant Awards. IOM’s core mandate is to promote humane and orderly migration for the benefit of all. We strive to do this by providing services and advice to governments and migrants. IOM works to promote international cooperation on migration issues, to assist in the search for practical solutions to migration problems and to provide humanitarian assistance to migrants in need, including refugees, asylum seekers and internally displaced people.

The African continent currently witnesses one of the largest and most complex migratory patterns in the world. People from across the continent move abroad, including to Southern Africa, in pursuit of better livelihood. The majority of these are young men and women, reflecting the continent’s young demography.

In its visionary document Agenda 2063, the African Union details the African continent’s development trajectory for the next fifty years. The African Union states that the document “is a call for action to all segments of African society to work together to build a prosperous and united Africa based on shared values and a common destiny”. It aims to help direct Africa’s growth in such a way that its resources and its people develop in a fair and equitable manner, that guarantees unity, peace and prosperity for all its citizens.

Now in its second year, the Mkhaya Migrant Awards, attest to many of the beliefs that we as IOM uphold.  The awards acknowledge the positive economic, social and cultural contribution that migrants make. IOM is happy to announce that this year, as a partner with the Department of Home Affairs, we will be running an essay and multimedia competition for young people from the ages of 18-30.

The competition is aimed at young people, currently enrolled in institutions of higher learning. The theme of the competition is “Migrants’ contribution to our communities, country and continent.” Students are welcome to submit their applications in an essay or in the form of a multimedia presentation. The deadline is Wednesday November 30, 2016. We see this competition as a great way to learn about how South Africa’s youth think about migrants’ contributions to their community, country and continent.

In trying to foster social cohesion, and broader intra-African cultural understanding amongst young people, the 10 winners of the competition will be invited to the Mkhaya Awards ceremony, and awarded a fully paid trip to the African Union (AU) Headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in 2017. The AU has been identified as an appropriate place for winners to visit, since it is the place where African governments make decisions on the continent’s political, economic and social future.

We are very excited to work with DHA on this innovative initiative, and we look forward to receiving creative essays and multimedia presentations.


Mr. Richard Ots

IOM Chief of Mission, South Africa