IOM Cote d’Ivoire Assesses Counter Trafficking Project on Liberian Border

Posted: 
12/04/15

Côte d'Ivoire - IOM Cote d’Ivoire has led a two-day evaluation mission to the town of San Pedro on the Liberian border as a part of its Akoma counter trafficking project.

The project is an innovative cooperation between IOM and Interpol initiated in June 2015.  Implemented in both Cote d’Ivoire and Ghana, it has rescued 48 child victims of trafficking and child labour in the cocoa industry.

Interpol is responsible for the law enforcement aspects of the project, while IOM is in charge of the rescued children’s recovery and provision of immediate and longer term assistance.

During the mission, the IOM team met with social workers working with the rescued children and received a comprehensive update. Assistance to the children and their families includes shelter, financial aid, and reintegration of the children in education.

A stakeholder workshop was also organized to bring together 35 participants from the Ministry of Solidarity, Family, Women and Children, Ministry of Social Affairs, the Police, Child Protection Unit in UNOCI, civil society organizations, local NGOs, beneficiaries, social workers and journalists.

The team also met with some of the children to identify possible areas for improvement, including follow-up techniques with rescued children, communication between different structures involved in the project, and training of police responsible for rescuing the children.

“I have been working in the cocoa industry. After being rescued, IOM has provided me with shelter and funded my vocational training as a mechanic,” said one of the rescued children.

IOM will conduct a final assessment in December, bringing the project to closure. Further follow-up tasks will be handed over to the government, notable the Ministry of Solidarity, Family, Women and Children, one of IOM’s main partners in the project. 

For further information please contact Anita Kassem at IOM Cote d’Ivoire, Tel:  +225 22528200/+225 79931991, Email: akassem@iom.int