International Migrants Day: UNESCO mobilized on information, migration and COVID-19

Within the framework of the project “Empowering Young People in Africa through media and communication”, UNESCO is committed on the occasion of International Migrants Day on December 18, 2020 in a digital awareness campaign in West and Central Africa.

December 18 is recognized by the United Nations as the International Migrants Day which is an opportunity to dispel prejudices and raise awareness of their contributions in the economic, cultural and social fields, for the benefit of both countries of origin and destination. In line with the principles of equal protection of all migrants’ rights, enshrined in the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration, UNESCO, through the project “Empowering Young People in Africa through Media and Communication”, organized a digital awareness campaign on information, migration and COVID-19 in West and Central Africa.

The campaign, which targets 08 countries (Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, Mali, Niger, Nigeria and Senegal), aims at sensitizing local populations, especially youth, on migration reporting in the sub-region, as well as on the risks for migrants to be stigmatized, in the context of the COVID-19 crisis.

The communication materials for this digital campaign were produced in French, English and 20 official national languages: Beti (Cameroon); Agni, Baule, Bete, Guere (Ivory Coast); Asante (Twi), Fanti (Ghana); Susu, Maninka (Guinea); Bambara, Fula, Songhay (Mali); Hausa, Zarma (Niger); Igbo, Yoruba and Pidgin (Nigeria); Mandinka, Sererand Wolof (Senegal).

The campaign includes the production of video clips, cartoons, audio and visual messages on
social networks and the sharing of these contents on social media and with locals media, for a wider reach to the target populations.

The awareness campaign involved the Franco-Burkinabe cartoonist Damien Glez, rappers and
slammers from Senegal and Niger, including Matador, Xuman, ISS, Mamy Victory, MC MO, Eve Crazy, Wizaby, Athless, Dev Voice and Soul MDM.

The video clips are the results of two writing workshops organized in Dakar and Niamey (in
October and November 2020), in collaboration with Africulturban and Global Actions Forum.
The main objective was to bring together journalists, experts, artists and migrants for the
production of artistic videos on information processing related to migration in Senegal and
Niger.

Damien Glez’ drawings will be published in a “Good Practices guideline for reporting on
Migration in West and Central Africa”, which was discussed during a regional webinar with
media and migration experts from the sub-region on 17 and 18 November 2020.

The project “Empowering Youth in Africa through Media and Communication”, is funded by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MAECI), through the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation (AICS), aims at empowering young boys and girls in targeted countries to make informed decisions on migration issues through better access to quality information (SDO 16.10).

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