As the world observes International Migrants Day this year, we are drawn to stories of social cohesion which are as varied and unique as each of the 272 million migrants living new lives and building new communities in every corner of the globe.
From the Syrian barber plying his trade in Turkey, to the classical musicians from Venezuela performing with peers in their Dominican Republic orchestra, we witness the promise that is released when migration is well-managed and handled with dignity for all. We see what comes from the syntheses borne by new arrivals adapting to traditions in their new communities. We see those communities flourishing as locals welcome the new into their midst.
This is more than a goal or a theory. This is the enduring, continuing reality of migration that has shaped humanity on this planet for millennia. Migrants go forth in search of safety or opportunity or a chance to reinvent themselves through education. They seek lives free from prejudice and discrimination. The societies that welcome them evolve for the better—becoming ever-changing communities open to the future we cannot escape, and that we resist at our peril.
The video presentations on this site explain this, simply, in the form of short stories that capture the cohesion that adheres when old meets new in a spirit of hope and acceptance. We learn together, create together, work together, sing, dance and play together. We live together.
That is the meaning of International Migrants Day, and its message. The International Organization for Migration salutes migrants and the communities they join, the communities they remake through their mutual effort.
We salute them and we support them, and pledge to make the future we believe is arriving for all of us. #WeTogether.
Social Cohesion: Recognizing Migration is a Benefit that Works for All
Too often, when we speak of migrants, we find ourselves having to speak about moments of extreme hardship, caught up in a narrative of crisis. Those who find themselves in detention in Libya, trafficked in the back of trucks, having sought new lives away from failing states, conflict and disaster.
Today is International Migrants Day, a day to remember these individuals and reiterate the need to respect the rights and dignity of all. It is a day set aside by the United Nations to recognize the estimated 272 million migrants that are integral members of all our societies today.