Guatemala Builds Capacity to Assist Migrant Children

Guatemala - IOM, in coordination with Guatemala’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, this week launched a course to train government officials and representatives of civil society institutions in assistance to migrant children, especially unaccompanied minors and children separated from their families.

“The course, which is funded by the US Department of State, seeks to strengthen Guatemala’s capacity to protect the rights of vulnerable, young migrants,” said Walter Arreaga, local coordinator of IOM’s Mesoamerica Program.

Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Anamaria Dieguez, said: "It is important for Guatemala to guarantee fundamental rights and safe migration for vulnerable populations in transit."

The course consists of 10 sessions, during which officials learn about human rights, the rights of migrant children, protection mechanisms, specialized on-route assistance, interagency coordination and laws that protect the migrant population.

Institutions attending the course included the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Social Development, General Directorate of Immigration, Ministry of Social Welfare, National Civil Police, Secretariat against Trafficking and Sexual Violence, and the Secretariat of Community Programs of the First Lady of Guatemala.

The course is part of the IOM’s Mesoamerica Regional Program, funded by the US State Department’s Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration (PRM), which seeks to strengthen the capacity of governments to protect and assist vulnerable migrants in seven Central American countries.

For further information, please contact Melissa Vega at IOM Guatemala, Tel. +502 2521-0500, Email: