IOM Gathers Government Counterparts for 4th EMERGE Steering Committee Meeting
Tbilisi – On 9 December IOM organized the 4th Steering Committee Meeting under its project - Enhancing Migrants’ Rights and Good Governance in Armenia and Georgia (EMERGE), funded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Norway. The meeting was attended by the project counterparts from the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, State Commission for Migration Issues, Revenue Service, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Internally Displaced Persons for the Occupied Territories, Labour Health and Social Affairs (MoLHSA) and Public Defender’s Office.
IOM presented some of the achievements in the period July – December 2021, such as the implementation of in-depth surveys Societal Attitude towards Migrants and Media Discourse on Immigration and Immigrant Integration Policy and Practice in Georgia - Achievements, Challenges and the Way Forward, capacity building for the Ministry of Internal Affairs to enhance communication with migrants, such as English language courses for Patrol Police and Tourist Police, International Migration Law and Intercultural Communications Training Course. Further, in cooperation with the Government of Georgia, IOM was able to conduct major promotional activities for its global MigApp and MiTA - The Migration Translation Application.
As EMERGE is a regional project, its activities are implemented in parallel with Armenia and some are aimed at promoting regional cooperation, such as Regional Conference on 15-16 November on Reintegration, Return and Labour Migration in the Context of Covid-19 Pandemic and partnership with civil society, with an aim to foster information exchange and explore cross border collaboration. Nine civil society organizations working in various regions of Georgia established the Advocacy Network for Migration Issues (ANMI) with IOM’s support to join efforts in identifying and solving migration-related issues. IOM also spoke about close cooperation with the local NGOs in the field of legal and integration support for migrants.
Finally, IOM introduced its planned exhibition dedicated to International Migrants Day and countering xenophobia. An important component of the project has been efforts to raise awareness of the general population about migrants’ rights, promote diversity and highlight the benefits of regular and safe migration, documenting the positive impact that migrants have on the local communities. IOM has done this in cooperation with local NGOs and media, through migrant stories. “Faces of Migration 2021” exhibition is the continuation of this effort. The photo exhibit will be organized in Tbilisi from 18 December 2021 – 10 January 2022 in front of Vake Park. It will present stories of migrants with different cultural backgrounds, living in Georgia and trying to achieve their dreams. The photo stories will also be available through the IOM web and social media channels.