A Senegalese dance group performs the journey of migrants for participants of the Female Face of Migration conference in Saly, Senegal. Credit: Caritas/Michelle Hough
By Fr Jerome Otitoyomi Dukiya, Caritas Nouadhibou , Mauritania
There’s a place called Tinzawaten on the border between Mali and Algeria where people are just abandoned. They’re people who’ve been deported from Algeria.
The European Union signed an agreement with Algeria about the return of migrants it was to take them back to their back to their own country, not abandon them in the desert.
The migrants left at Tinzawaten don’t eat for days and they don’t have water to bathe in. They live in an abandoned village which was destroyed by rebels during the war and many of the houses don’t have roofs. It’s cold in the desert at night. Continue reading
Témoignage de Marie Béatrice Umutesi, rwandaise immigrée en Belgique après le génocide, qui a partagé son expérience de réfugiée avec Caritas à la conférence « Le visage féminin de la migration »
J’ai quitté le Rwanda en juillet 1994 pour la République Démocratique du Congo pour fuir la guerre, le génocide et les massacres de populations civiles auxquelles s’adonnaient les différentes armées et milices qui s’affrontaient dans le pays. La peur m’a beaucoup aidé dans la prise de cette décision. En effet, il n’est pas facile de décider de partir, de quitter son pays, sa famille, ses amis, son travail, sa maison pour aller dans un pays qu’on ne connaît pas, sans savoir comment on sera accueilli, sans nécessairement connaître la langue et la culture, surtout quand on a un certain âge et qu’on avait déjà planifié son avenir pour les restant de ses jours. Continue reading
Caritas representatives from all over the world and a range of high-level migration experts from international organisations will discuss trafficking, exploitation and abuse at the conference "The Female Face of Migration" in Saly, Senegal, from 30 November-2 December 2010. Credit: Caritas/Michelle Hough
By Michelle Hough
The Atlantic Ocean is a graveyard. I was reminded of this during the Mass to close the first day of the Female Face of Migration conference when we were asked to pray for all the migrants who had drowned in it.
Every year hundreds, possibly thousands of immigrants die trying to cross the seas from West Africa to Europe - not just the Atlantic, which was just 30 metres from where we were attending Mass – but also the Mediterranean. Most of us aren’t really aware of this and these people remain anonymous – barely a blip on the international news. Continue reading
By Merlie “Milet” B. Mendoza, advisor to Caritas Manila
Migration is a key issue in my country. Filipino nurses, caregivers, domestic helpers, entertainers, engineers, teachers and construction workers are present in all corners of the globe. There are several million documented overseas Filipino workers.
Even if the phenomenon has, on the one hand, tremendously improved the economic well-being of many Filipinos as well as the country; on the other hand, it has resulted in a depressing social hazard. Countless mothers have left their children to go work abroad, poor women are taken advantage of and often become victims of exploitation, violence and sexual slavery. Continue reading
Janete Ferreira from Caritas Ecuador with Suhad Zarafili
By Suhad Zarafili of Caritas Jordan
A lot of migrant women come to Caritas Jordan’s health clinic with high blood pressure and diabetes. These are women who don’t drink or smoke because all the money they earn they send home. They often suffer from stress and depression and their anger and frustration they keep inside.
All the migrant women who come to our clinic are suffering. They are sick physically and mentally and most of them are without work permits.
The women often talk about their problems to the nuns at Caritas Jordan. Then the sisters go to their homes to support them and give them advice. Continue reading
Najla playing the "Passport game" - a sort of warm up before starting this morning. We all got our Universal Passport, had it stamped and were guaranteed the same rights and freedom of movement. Credit. Hough/Caritas
By Najla Chahda, director of Caritas Lebanon Migrant Centre
Yesterday, I arrived at Beirut International Airport to come here to the conference in Senegal and following immigration control, I saw a woman sleeping on the floor with blood coming from her nose. I went to talk to her and found out that she was from Bangladesh and her employer had brought her there.
I got the airport doctor to come and he said she was haemorrhaging in her stomach – that’s why the blood was dripping from her nose. The woman gave me the employer’s number in Arabic but when I called him, he said he’d signed the release papers for her at the airport and she was no longer his responsibility.
This is the type of case that Caritas Lebanon deals with. Migrant women come to Lebanon and the employers pay around $50 for a false medical insurance to cover bureaucratic needs. Some of the migrant women believe they’ve got health coverage but they haven’t. Continue reading
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Gloria Moreno (GM) of the ILO’s International Labour Migration Programme, Blandine Mollard (BM) of the International Organization for Migration, Sr Laurence Huard (LH) works for Caritas Algeria, Aida Garcia Naranjo (AGN) works for CEDAL, a civil society organisation in Peru discuss the female face of migration, Luis Carlos Aguilar Badilla (LCAB) works for Caritas Costa Rica.
Post your comments below.
How does the migration process affect women differently from men?
GM: The migration process definitely affects women migrants differently from men. Continue reading