Global Diaspora Week: Maximizing Diaspora Contributions in Development
Geneva – Diasporas have the capacity to react to emergencies and support their communities through development initiatives, over 120 Diaspora Organizations linking to more than 30 million people, and representatives of 100 diaspora partner organizations and migration experts, were told during a meeting last week organized by the International Organizations for Migration (IOM).
IOM Director General António Vitorino underlined the relevance of diaspora-led initiatives during Diaspora Week which was organized by the Global Diaspora Confederation (GDC) between 12 December and 18 December.
“Partnership with diaspora communities has been at the heart of our work throughout the decades,” DG Vitorino said. “As we witnessed during this pandemic and beyond, diasporas have the talent, knowledge, resources, and commitment to engage with their communities during the times of crisis and emergencies or when engaging in long-term development work.”
The event provided an opportunity to share experiences creating transnational initiatives in Asia, Africa, Europe, North and Central America and the Caribbean, South America, and Oceania.
The GDC also hosted its first Humanitarian Assistance meeting to discuss the pathways forward for its global diaspora-led humanitarian hub initiative in collaboration with IOM.
At the Global Diaspora Assembly held on International Migrants Day (December 18) IOM Deputy Director General for Operations Ugochi Daniels congratulated diaspora organizations for their inspiring work and support provided to their communities throughout the whole migration cycle, “from informing them about the risks of migration and supporting them settling in their new host lands, to creating new job opportunities back in your homelands.”
DDG Daniels highlighted that in order to maximize diasporas’ positive impact in society and reduce inequality, diasporas, international organizations, governments and partners must work on further capacity-building efforts, horizontal communication and collaboration channels, and gender equality to inspire the new generation of young diaspora leaders.
Diaspora Week 2021 was a collective effort that aimed to gather and facilitate an open dialogue among diaspora organizations and partners. The final report will feed into the International Migration Forum Review in May 2022 to further engage, enable and empower diasporas to become agents and accelerators of sustainable development.
The GDC concept was introduced at the launch of the Global Diaspora Virtual Exchange Conference organized by the iDiaspora on 22 April 2020. It was set up as a coalition for urgent global unity in solidarity with diasporic victims of xenophobia and discrimination due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Since then, the Confederation has reached out to 2,000 diaspora federations and associations in over 100 countries for support. It is the world’s largest diaspora-led non-political civil society organization founded to connect and empower diaspora organizations, established in the Netherlands as a charitable foundation and made up of an international board of diaspora organization leaders. It aspires to build an inclusive movement where all Diaspora Organizations can be supported, belong to, discover, and realize their ambitions in order to achieve peace, unity, and social and economic advancement for all.
To find out more about the Global Diaspora Week, please visit: globaldiasporaweek.org
For more information, please contact Larisa Lara at IOM HQ, email: firstname.lastname@example.org