Our Focal Points in countries of origin are essential in approaching host Institutions. They help identify priority sectors, liaise with diaspora experts about their assignment, and facilitate the overall implementation and monitoring of CD4D2.
“I liaise with the diaspora experts and Host Institutions in Mogadishu. Currently, I have active contacts with the Ministry of Planning, Investment & Economic Development, the Ministry of Water, the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Public Works & Reconstruction (South West State), the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Office of Diaspora Affairs), Somali National University and Benadir Regional Administration.
I explain the project’s objectives and the support Host Institutions can receive in reaching their Sustainable Development Goals. The government is aware of IOM’s capacity building track record because of our long-running MIDA (Migration for Development in Africa) project deploying diaspora professionals. So they fully realize the value of diaspora experts. I prepare coordinate the recruitment process and make sure that their assignment meets the expectations of the Host Institution.
I am much involved in the particular circumstances our participants face in view of the volatile political situation in Somalia. Together we explore what they can realistically achieve. Taking that into account, a three-month assignment is short, if you want output on deliverables. This is why we have monthly meetings where our participants can share experiences with their counterparts and talk about how they can overcome setbacks.
Safety is crucial in Somalia: the location where the participants are staying and how they commute to the ministries. We share security updates and check up with the participants. Some diaspora experts have never been to Somalia, so they need time to adjust and settle. All are very interested and happy to return to Somalia to share their expertise. They really want to give back.
Fortunately, the ministries realize the potential of diaspora experts and there is a high demand for their expertise. Because the ministries are so positive we receive many requests for assistance with capacity building.
Since Somalia is dealing with a huge brain drain we really need the diaspora’s skills and expertise. Our CD4D2 participants can play a big role in the development and growth of our country.”