By Akanimo Sampson
As part of their sustainable reintegration process, the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) has delivered a seed capital to 25 migrants returned to Honduras, in order to take productive actions.
The $25,000 invested will allow the beneficiaries to buy raw material, merchandise or work equipment, depending on the type of enterprise. The supported initiatives are distributed in various sectors of the economy such as industry, agribusiness, commerce and services.
Beneficiaries receive approximately $1,000 per person, depending on the scale of their enterprise. One IOM official explained the process as follows: IOM makes a study of each case; an IOM team purchases the items required for each enterprise.
Beneficiaries participate in a training process to strengthen their project ideas and transform them into a business plan with a long-term vision.
One such beneficiary is Marcia Berónica Elvir, of Catacamas, in Honduras’ Olancho province. She recently returned from Mexico, having travelled there irregularly, with hopes of starting her own beauty salon.
“Shortly after returning to Honduras, I decided to start my business”, she recalled. “IOM supported me with the purchase of dyes, shampoo, enamel and other materials, but also with training such as ‘Sales Strategies’ and ‘Teamwork,’ which have helped me greatly to improve my business plan. I am satisfied with what I have achieved even now I have two girls employed working with me.”
She affirms she will not migrate irregularly again.
IOM beneficiaries participated in workshops organised by the National Professional Training Institute of Honduras (INFOP) and the Lutheran World Federation, and included a learning of basic administration, marketing and sales tools, as well as the proper management of their finances. Entrepreneurs were also provided with psychosocial support.
“Migrants are entrepreneurs, with innovative skills and abilities, who seek to contribute to their family and the Honduran economy,” said Roberto Canizales, IOM Project Coordinator in Honduras. “They contribute to the generation of sustainable development opportunities, to the reduction of irregular migration and to a better migration management.”
This project favours the fulfilment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), specifically those that promote resilience in vulnerable situations; the elimination of all forms of violence; full and effective participation of women and equal leadership opportunities.
It also contributes to the achievement of the SDG goals related to the promotion of policies for the development of productive activities, creation of decent jobs, and entrepreneurship; and with the facilitation of orderly, safe, regular and responsible migration and mobility.
Both the delivery of seed capital and the training process took place within the framework of the Trinational Project for Resilience and Social Cohesion in North Central America, an initiative of the United Nations Peacebuilding Fund (PBF), implemented by the UN Agency for Refugees (UNHCR), IOM and the UN Development Programme.
The event was chaired by Humberto Madrid Zerón, Mayor of Juticalpa; Carlos Rivera, National Coordinator of the Lutheran World Federation; Santiago Vargas, RED Project Coordinator; Sergio Matamoros, Regional Coordinator of INFOP; and Roberto Canizales, IOM Project Coordinator in Honduras.