In 2016 International Organization for Migration (IOM) in Slovakia assisted 116 foreigners to return safely home from Slovakia to 18 countries and IOM Migration Information Centre provided integration counselling to over 2,800 clients regarding residential issues and integration in Slovakia. Moreover, IOM staff arranged humanitarian transfer of over 350 refugees from refugee camps to the Slovak Republic and from Slovakia to the countries of their final resettlement.

Here is a summary of IOM results in the key areas of its activities in Slovakia in 2016.

International Organization for Migration (IOM) announced today (20/01/2017) that over 1,000 refugees have been resettled since 2009 through Slovakia’s emergency transit facility to the USA, Canada and Norway. Resettlement of refugees through Slovakia is a joint activity of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the Government of Slovakia and IOM.

International Organization for Migration (IOM) expresses its concern for many migrants and asylum seekers housed in camps and in Greece and particularly on the Greek islands enduring freezing winter conditions across Eastern Mediterranean. The region has been hit by some of the heaviest snowfall and the most severe icy temperatures in years.

IOM calls for comprehensive, rapid action to protect and alleviate the suffering of these people. IOM continues to work with the EU, the Greek Government and partners to improve conditions in Greece.

At the occasion of the International Migrant's Day and its 65th anniversary International Organization for Migration (IOM) organized the first Global Migration Film Festival that was held at Kino Lumière in Bratislava on 15 December 2016.

Apart from Slovakia, the festival was held in December 2016 in nearly 90 countries worldwide. It brought to Slovak audience real stories of migrants during their arduous journeys for a new life – on their migration in Africa, en route to Europe and on life of migrants in Europe.

International Organization for Migration (IOM) was established on 5 December 1951 with the aim to assist with the resettlement of the many Europeans who were displaced in the aftermath of World War II. Since then, IOM assisted millions of people forced to flee their homes and countries due to danger, conflicts, disasters, or those who left in search of better opportunities for themselves and their families.

Nowadays, IOM activities cover a wide range of migration issues in more than 150 countries worldwide. In September 2016 IOM joined the United Nations System.

International Organization for Migration (IOM) created a new mobile application Safe Travel & Work Abroad, which by means of interactive game and useful information points out the risks of human trafficking. Download the application to your smartphone before travelling abroad and you will have all the useful information always with you – whether you travel abroad on holidays or for work.

The mobile application is available on Google Play and App Store (for Android and iOS) and on the IOM web site www.safe.iom.sk in five languages: Slovak, English, Czech, Polish and Hungarian.

On 19 September 2016, International Organization fo Migration (IOM) became part of the United Nations (UN) System as a related organization. The UN-IOM Agreement was signed by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and IOM Director General William Lacy Swing at the UN Headquarters in New York. More information is available on the IOM Global web site, on the web site of the UN Summit for Refugees and Migrants and the UN Media web site (photos and videorecording of the signing ceremony).

The IOM Migration Information Centre (MIC) offers to foreigners a financial contribution for further education or retraining. Foreigners are eligible for the contribution if they come from a non-EU and EEA country, came to live, work or do business in Slovakia, and taking a course will help them to find a new or better job or to improve their living situation.

You can apply for the contribution to 31 October 2016 the latest.

The study informs about the Slovak labour migration policy, discussions on labour migration in the Slovak Republic or tools for identification of labour shortages and shortages in qualifications as well as envisaged labour migration needs in the Slovak Republic. Besides that it also analyses available statistical data and forecasts related to labour shortages in the Slovak Republic.

Check out the latest issue of the newsletter IOM in Slovakia 2/2016 with interesting facts and news about the activities and services of IOM in Slovakia - available in Slovak and English language.

If you wish to receive the IOM Slovakia Newsletter directly to your e-mail, you can subscribe here: https://iom.sk/en/publications/subscribe-to-iom-slovakia-newsletter.html.