The Reintegration of Returned Migrants – Talking Christianity

Reintegration Of Returned Migrants:

Reintegration of MigrantsReintegration of the returned migrants – One thing that is very important in the life of any returned migrant is how to reintegrate him back to the society that he left. It’s one thing to return, it is another thing to have the willpower to be reintegrated into the society. This factor has made so many migrants who returned back home to find themselves back to the unsafe routes. They couldn’t simply stay back home. The system back home couldn’t tally with the way of life they have experienced. And also the kind of aspiration they have in life.

Somehow, they find everything working in the opposite direction. The reality is that many of the returned migrants would like to go back to the unsafe routes. The hindrance they are facing is that they do not have the required financial power. It implies that those without money to make the move are not happy staying back in their country. But since they are back and roaming the streets how do you manage them and make them stay without getting into unbecoming characters? Therefore, reintegration program standout as the best option and every vulnerable returned migrant should key into it.

Reintegration Initiative Profitable For Returned Migrants:

The fact to accept is that reintegration program is good initiative that should be embraced by the vulnerable returned migrants. The purpose of reintegration programs is to set the returned migrants back on their feet. Reintegration programs will help them to establish themselves in the mainstream society. However, it is good to have reintegration initiative.

But the concern should be on how to make it work properly to benefit the people who needed it. An initiative that will not satisfy the benefactors and the beneficiaries is as bad as not having any at all. In the recent times there have been several reintegration initiatives by both UN Organs and some NGOs. We’re going to painstakingly look at the things that would help government or NGOs to run a successful migrant reintegration.

Some of the reintegration programs of these organizations were unsuccessful because the points highlighted below were not considered.


It is an understandable fact that the issue of migrant returnees came to some governments unexpectedly. They were not expecting that migration issue of such magnitude should happen. Suddenly there was the case of unrest in some North African countries and they have to evacuate their citizens. So, on the side of the government, they didn’t prepare against the aftermath of the evacuation. Also some of the stakeholders didn’t prepare and of course they have not handled such magnitude of migration palaver. The result was that they were all learning on their different tasks as the issues evolve.  At the end they were unable to handle the issues that cropped up with the returned migrants properly.

The backlash was protests and civil disturbances from the returned migrants who felt bad. The protests and civil disturbances didn’t tell well on the side of the government. In order to have a smooth reintegration program, the government and all the stakeholders have to prepare themselves. The preparedness should be by having a mapped out plan on what and what to do with the migrants.


Acceptance is a crucial point in the scheme of migrant reintegration. Reintegrate people you have not wholeheartedly accepted will become a difficult task to handle. The word acceptance in this context means embracement. That is to accept them the way they are and understand that they are. This is by building the understanding that they fellow human being irrespective of whatever that must have happened to them.

The authorities were keeping away from the migrants and do not want to have anything to do with them. It looks as if these vulnerable migrants have committed serious offense by travelling out of their country. The notion is like “After all nobody send them”. The reality is that it will be very difficult for government, NGOs, CSOs and family members to start a reintegration program with people they have not accepted. Evidences on ground have indicated that many reintegration programs in the past flopped because of lack of acceptance.

Lacking Understanding of Who The Vulnerable Migrants Are:

The acceptance factor plays important role in the understanding of who the vulnerable migrants are. Acceptance factor acts as the fulcrum that helps to establish a relationship between the benefactors and the beneficiaries. If the benefactors really want to work and achieve their arms in the life of the vulnerable migrant returnees, they must seek to understand who they are. Seeking to understand them will help the benefactors to know how and why they should disburse their resources in the hands of these vulnerable migrants. Handling your resources to people you haven’t ascertain their state of mind and their level of understanding of things of life is an otiose venture. This explains the reason so many reintegration programs have failed.

Making Decision on the Behalf of the Migrants:

In some reintegration programs, the benefactors make the decision on the behalf of the returned migrants. They discuss issues concerning the migrants without consulting them and find out if such decision taken is suitable for them. However, many of the migrants do not have the withal to reject their “kind” gesture but to accept it. And then they do whatever pleases them with they receive from the benefactors. This again is one of the reasons many reintegration programs have failed to achieve its aim.

Therefore, in making decisions about the returned migrants, it is very necessary to seek for their opinions. From seeking for their opinions what they want is ascertained. It’s not proper for the benefactors to finagle their ideas on them and expect that things will become rosy at the end. The returned migrants are human being and as a result they have their own wills, let’s give them the respect due them.

Lack of Orientation Programs:

The returned migrants are people from different socio-cultural backgrounds; they also have different educational backgrounds. Again they are a group of people who have undergone so many ordeals in the hand of evil minded people. As a result of this, they can be considered as vulnerable people in the scheme of things that has to do with mental ability. For this reason, before engaging them into any reintegration program, the benefactors should organize orientation programs for them. These orientation programs will help up their minds and state of being in the scheme of things.

They need to understand what it takes again to establish themselves in their country. They should be taught how to learn to unlearn many things in their hearts. These could be done through seminars, symposiums, workshops and capacity building programs. These programs will help to prepare their minds as regards to the main reintegration programs. Lack of orientation programs has led to the failure of many reintegration programs and benefactors are wondering why their efforts are not hitting the mark.

Culled from the book “Dealing With Migration Issues” written by Chukwuemeka Charles Asiegbu

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