By Richard Ots
As published by the Sunday Independent Newspaper on Sunday 3 August 2014
The International Organization for Migration (IOM) joined the global community to celebrate the Mandela International Day on Friday 18 July. IOM staff visited Alfonso Maria Fusco Child and Youth Care Centre in Bronkhorstspruit for a fun-filled day with the kids, characterized by laughter, braai, and entertainment. Grocery supplies were also donated to the centre.
The International Organization for Migration has appointed Mr. Richard Ots as the new Chief of Mission for the IOM mission in South Africa effective from 1 July 2014.
Mr. Ots will oversee the South Africa main office based in Pretoria including three sub-offices in Durban, Cape Town and Musina. As the head of IOM in South Africa, Mr. Ots will oversee the implementation of all IOM activities in South Africa.
IOM has welcomed the decision of Ministers of Health from Malaria-Endemic Countries in Southern Africa to adopt the Victoria Falls Declaration, in which they commit to eliminate and expand malaria control to hard-to-reach migrant and mobile communities.
Malaria-Endemic Countries Unite to Extend Malaria Control to Hard-To-Reach Migrant and Mobile Communities
IOM and RBM collaborate to improve access to key malaria interventions
Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe 5 July: Roll Back Malaria Partnership (RBM), together with the International Organization for Migration (IOM), has invited Ministers of Health from Southern Africa, Asia and other malaria-endemic regions, as well as the private sector to discuss the impact of migration on malaria control and elimination and address jointly the challenge of providing adequate health services to cross-border, mobile and migrant communities.
SADC Member States to Strengthen Efforts to Address Mixed and Irregular Migration Flows in the Region
Lilongwe, Malawi: Senior Government officials from SADC member states have concluded a three-day regional technical Migration Dialogue for Southern Africa (MIDSA) Conference at the Bingu International Conference Centre (BICC) in Lilongwe, Malawi, on 2 July 2014. The conference was aimed at taking stock of actions undertaken at national and regional level to address mixed and irregular migration, reflect current trends in the region and share best practices among member states and other regional partners.
IOM’s Regional Office for Southern Africa, in partnership with the Government of Malawi, the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Secretariat, UNHCR and UNODC will host a regional technical Migration Dialogue for Southern Africa (MIDSA) conference from 30 June – 2 July 2014 in Lilongwe, Malawi.
Southern Africa experiences all types of movements such as mixed and irregular migration, labour migration and forced migration, including displacement due to conflict and natural disasters. These migration flows involve over four million economically active persons, and an additional unspecified number of undocumented migrants, including many vulnerable populations such as women and children.
IOM conducted a two-day diaspora engagement training for Lesotho government officials and partners from 27th to 28th May 2014 in Maseru, Lesotho. The training was opened by Lesotho Minister of Home Affairs Joang Molapo.
This training was aimed at cultivating strong diaspora engagement and management knowledge for participants to ensure smooth implementation of a recently launched project: “Mobilizing Medical Diaspora Resources for Lesotho”.
Music and dance are among the ancient forms of art that have flourished for many centuries in Africa. Music entertains, educates, soothes and unites. We all have that one song that moves us too deeply and leaves us almost in tears when we listen to it. That is the power of music, the right combination of lyrics, rhythm and instruments can inspire change and shape society. This makes music one of the perfect ingredients for social change in our communities.