The prolonged war in Somalia left many youth in Somalia idle or without opportunities to improve their talents. With the support of IOM, the Skills Development Center (SDC) is working with youngsters across Mogadishu to improve their creative talents and to become self-reliant professionals.
The war in Somalia affected the growth and popularity of the local arts and cultural practices. To revive that, IOM is working with Radio Dalsan in Mogadishu and Middle Shabelle to engage the youth in different artistic activities. These include: music and storytelling competitions, art festivals, as well as art exhibits in Mogadishu, Jowhar and Balcad.
By T. Craig Murphy, IOM-Kenya and Dayib Askar, IOM-Somalia
Fathia Mubarik is a 21 year-old Somali refugee who was born in Hargeisa, Somaliland. In 2012, she was granted prima-facie refugee status in Yemen as a Somali national. At the end of May 2015, Fathia decided to escape from Yemen and return to the country she fled. She was single when she left Hargeisa two years ago. She returned with a disabled daughter and having lost contact with her husband, a Yemeni national who disappeared at the start of the Yemen Crisis in late March 2015.
By Hamza Osman
The conflict in Yemen has seen over one million people displaced inside Yemen and approximately 14,000 Somalis who had previously fled the war in their country are now seeking to return to Somalia.
The civil war in Somalia destroyed key public infrastructure facilities such as sport and recreation centers. Without these centers, the youth did not have safe spaces to meet and engage each other. To address this issue, IOM completed the rehabilitation of the Jowhar District Community Center’s basketball court in April 2015.
Since Somaliland declared independence in 1991, it has achieved relative stability. However, Somaliland remains vulnerable to extremism and violent conflict. To promote peace and stability among youth in Somaliland, IOM supports arts and culture in Togdheer Region. Implementing partner, Somaliland Youth Development and Voluntary Organization (SOYDAVO), engages youth through music and drama to promote healthy outlets that encourage self-expression, confidence, and respect among peers.
After the collapse of the Central Government of Somalia, crucial infrastructure was not maintained and quickly deteriorated, causing further problems such as flooding. In Shangaani District, the drainage system fell into disrepair and caused massive flooding in the streets and negatively affected area businesses.
Life in IDP camps is always difficult. We had a life back there in our home. We had a piece of land in Qoryoley, but because of the fight we lost everything. We lost our property and had no other option than to move to the capital. I was not even sure how life would be in Mogadishu but I just followed my neighbours and friends who were also moving to the city.
Seven Somali diaspora experts,who are currently embedded in government institutions in Mogadishu, Hargeisa, Bosaso and Garowe,returned to Somalia from abroad to conduct short-term capacity building assignments to train Somali government officials as part of the QUESTS-MIDA project. In April 2013, they completed a “Training-of-Trainers” workshop conducted by IOM Somalia and UNDP Somalia.