Migration Week, strengthening partnerships through “Albania is YOU!”

In light of the Migration Week from 14 – 18 February 2022, in coordination with the Ministry of Interior, IOM Albania continued with the implementation of the nationwide awareness-raising campaign “Albania is YOU!”. As part of this campaign, we held meeting with local government partners, civil society, academia, and youth organizations in Fier, Vlora and Gjirokastra regions to discuss on how to prevent irregular migration and join the efforts to implement the awareness-raising initiatives among the key target groups considering to migrate.

The theme for the 2022 Migration Week was about Cooperation and Partnership for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration. These round tables in different regions of Albania were a great opportunity to discuss proactive coordination and synergies between the different local and central structures dealing with migrations issues on daily basis.

“The migration of young people is a challenging phenomenon for Albanian society. I believe that partnership between the public, private institutions, and civil society is essential in providing opportunities for young people, based on their skills and abilities,” said Elvi Daka, a civil society representative in Fier.

“Albania is YOU!” campaign aims to influence the change of behavior of the groups with high potential to migrate irregularly as well as key “enablers” in Albania. The campaign is raising awareness among Albanian citizens considering irregular migration to Europe on the risks of irregular migration and provides information on existing economic and educational opportunities in Albania as well as regular migration channels.

These actions are amplified through the establishment of an “influencers” network with personal migration experience in 12 regions of Albania, one in the Netherland and one in Belgium. The influencers are working to sensitize the population through events, social networks, mini-projects, awareness-raising, video messages etc. Through this combined approach, IOM is expanding field activities and ensuring a solid network contributing to the dissemination of the message campaign along with a mass media campaign to be implemented in parallel.

“To achieve such great and noble goals as nationwide awareness-raising campaign “Albania is YOU!” aims, it cannot be done alone from us as influencers or from any institution. The partnership is key. Cooperation between local structures, national, organizations, individuals, certain groups is necessary, not only to do their duty according to what is defined by law but above all to coordinate and put efforts on preventing irregular migration,” highlighted Arbi Tepelena, the Campaign Influencer in Vlora Region.

“Through this initiative we are building on a long-lasting partnership of IOM with key stakeholders at all levels, to make sure that people are well informed and supported properly so they make informed decisions for their lives when it comes to migration choices,” concluded Alketa Gaxha, IOM Albania Project Coordinator.

“Albania is YOU!” awareness campaign is implemented as part of ARISE_ALL project, with the financial support of the European Union and partners: Migration Office of the Belgian Federal Office for Home Affairs (IO), and the Repatriation and Deportation Service (DT&V) of the Netherlands.

SDG 17 - Partnerships for the Goals