Today, an episode of LINK 2007 was aired on Rai3 and RaiPlay on Spazio Libero TV, Rai Parlamento's column. LINK's president, Roberto Ridolfi, spoke in the studio, providing details on phase three of the project aimed at making the relationship between migration and development fruitful. Other speakers included Annachiara Moltoni, Head of Inclusive Development and Sustainability at the ELIS Centre, Cléophas Adrien Dioma, President of Le Réseau Association and Sandro De Luca, Director of CISP.
The entire episode focused on some of the network's key themes, with a particular focus on the migration and development nexus: from migration opportunities, to the importance of training, the crucial involvement of diasporas also in cooperation relations and project choices, the regular and circular migration system.
In collaboration between its member organisations, LINK has been engaged from 2018 to 2019 in the realisation of the Redemption Song project, with the aim of informing and raising awareness among the populations of the Sahel (Senegal, Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger and the Republic of Guinea) about the risks of irregular migration, in order to stimulate effective synergies and collaborations between civil society organisations (CSOs) working in the field of migration and development in these five countries and between them and Italian organisations.
A second project phase, entitled 'Personal fulfilment as an alternative to migration', is focusing on training to strengthen the capacities of young people in Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger, opening them up to the various job placement opportunities existing in their countries and promoting personal fulfilment as an alternative to migration.
Roberto Ridolfi then drew attention to the next phase of the project and its objectives: 'To guarantee the freedom to choose migration, it is essential to structure a field of action that integrates education and information and provides effective tools to offer an alternative to migration. Through phase three of the project, we are working to combine these tools with various partnerships, involving civil society networks, diasporas, youth networks in Africa, microfinance networks and international government institutions. The support of the Italian government and the European Union will be indispensable'.
Annachiara Moltoni, illustrated the main opportunities offered by the project: "The message conveyed is not don't leave, but rather the identification of possible opportunities and alternatives to departure. The first is undoubtedly that of finding decent work locally through vocational training geared to the country's needs and possibilities, which will also have to extend to training people for job placement in the countries to which people intending to migrate are heading. We conceive migration - added the ELIS manager - as a reality of moving talents and opportunities: in order to be realised, it is essential that training and work are geared to the actual needs of the labour market, both locally and in the destination countries".
Cléophas Adrien Dioma emphasised the key objectives since the first Redemption Song project: 'To foster regular migration in the five identified African countries and to actively involve the diasporas in Italy. To do this, we have focused our efforts on communication, training and the involvement of civil society organisations and associations in those countries, devising a communication strategy aimed at countering illegal migration'.
Sandro De Luca takes up the point considered fundamental in the LINK 2007 idea: 'It is imperative to build a system that makes migration a choice, as one of the possible options. Migration is intrinsic to the development processes of every country, with tangible consequences in our work. Therefore, we must orient our programmes to normalise migration, transforming it from a desperate choice to a conscious decision among several opportunities'.
The episode was broadcast on Rai3 and RaiPlay HERE