Presentation of the Fab Lab project in Djibouti at the International Dialogue on Migration (Geneva, 2020)

Extreme poverty in Djibouti has declined in the last fifteen years but remains high with about one fifth of the population continuing to live below the international poverty line. Having few opportunities at home leaves many in the country vulnerable to irregular migration and the risks associated with it. IOM supports Djiboutian migrant returnees to return home voluntarily from other countries around the world. Enabling migrants to (re-)establish economic self-sufficiency, reach social stability within their communities and achieve psycho-social well-being are at the core of IOM’s approach to reintegration and are key to support sustainability. In particular, learning new skills in sustainable industries and entrepreneurship are vital in the context of Djibouti to ensure economic independence and foster returnees empowerment and participation in the social and economic life.  Many of Djibouti’s young people, in particular young women, need support to gain expertise in sustainable industries and entrepreneurship – giving them a real option to stay and work at home. 

The primary objective of the “Creative Space” is twofold: to support the empowerment of two groups - potential irregular migrants aged 18-26 and migrant returnees - so that they can develop innovative micro businesses and to communicate effectively about the Creative Space Initiative to external audiences. The longer-term objective of the project is to provide young people in Djibouti with a real choice about whether to migrate.