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Students, Youth, Women Leaders Receive Training On Migration

Karamo Conteh in the middle of a women group during a training session on migration inNorth Bank and Lower River Regions (pc: Karamo)

By Landing Ceesay 

Two Gambians based in Germany, Karamo Conteh and Seedy Saidykhan have trained over 100 students, youth and women leaders on migration in NBR and LRR.

 Karamo Conteh, a current graduate student at HTW University of Applied Sciences and also a Gambian Diaspora Mentor for Migrant Media Network, and Seedy Saidykhan, another Gambian Diaspora Mentor, conducted migration training for more than 40 student leaders, 40 youth leaders, and 40 women leaders in the North Bank Region (NBR) and Lower River Region (LRR).

The Gambian duo travelled to the country through the Migrant Media Network project by r0g_agency for open culture and critical transformation based in Berlin, Germany.  The project, sponsored by the German Foreign Office through Migrant Media Network to provide young Africans with reliable information and training on migration issues.

Migrant Media Network also addresses misinformation on social media to make informed decisions and be aware of safer migration options to Europe; and promotes youth entrepreneurship at home as a way to build economic and social resilience, by encouraging youth to create their own opportunities and work within their communities.

While speaking to Kerr Fatou on the training in the North Bank and Lower River Regions, Karamo Conteh expressed delight at being part of the people and effort in sharing reliable information with young Africans in making informed decisions and also expressed gratitudes to Migrant Media Network for financing the trip to The Gambia. 

“I focused more on SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely) Migration. I went to Europe as a student and my experience was awesome there because I did not go through any form of Asylum seeking. I found myself integrated within Germany so easily and connected. The whole process of getting all my documents was so easy and literally like that for every student. So, throughout my activities, I was strongly encouraging fellow youth and students to focus more on their educational careers, as well as those in other professions such as skills training, to take it seriously and be focused to make it easier for them both within and outside The Gambia,” Mr Conteh said. 

Meanwhile, Seedy Saidykhan too expressed similar sentiments about Migrant Media Network and shared with this medium, his own experience with Lower River Region participants. 

Saidykhan further urged his audience, particularly the youths, to plan ahead of time before embarking on an irregular migration journey to Europe.

Unlike Conteh, Seedy travelled to Europe via Libya, seven years ago. On the journey he recalled facing several hurdles.

During the sessions, the duo spoke to the female participants about the existences of human trafficking and smuggling on the journey. 

“Human traffickers and smugglers disseminate incorrect information regarding migration to get money. They [traffickers] are unconcerned about the persons they are smuggling. Working with traffickers and smugglers is extremely dangerous and we urge people to desist from such, and encourage the participants to be cautious of them as they often target unemployed youth.

“If you are thinking about migrating, take time to think about it carefully. Before making any decision, it is very helpful to think about what your goals are. In other words, what outcome or result are you hoping for? It is helpful to have a clear picture of what you are hoping for. Then the next step is to create a detailed plan for how to reach these goals. One tool that can help you to set and achieve goals is using SMART goals. SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-Based,” the duo told Kerr Fatou in a telephone interview. 

The training was conducted from 16th to 18th November in the North Bank Region by Karamo, and from 15th to 17th November by Seedy in the Lower River Region. 

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