The first question we are often asked at Humans on the Move, is "where do you work"? And we respond with 'everywhere'. While at any given moment we might be deep in work in one community or another, we are global. Since our inception we have framed how we look at both challenges and opportunities, by adapting a framework developed by our co-founder, Lina Srivastava and her team on a prior project, the film, "Who is Dayani Cristal?"
In lieu of specific countries or cities, we see sending, transit and receiving communities.
Sending communities are the places where people feel that they have no choice but to leave, whether that is fleeing from violence, political unrest, persecution, climate change, economic inequality and lack of opportunity, natural disaster, or a combination thereof. On a global scale, there is a focus on the country of origin, however in reality every single person is originating from a community. Often displacement happens internally within their own home country.
We understand as Humans on the Move that we are not going to be able to address or prevent forced displacement entirely. We are seeking solutions that are more readily solvable through social enterprise solutions and programs -- particularly those led by the affected community itself -- that address challenges around economic disparity, climate change, food and water scarcity, and the like -- that often create the conditions requiring people to migrate. For example, we support the development of entrepreneurial communities, locally-led and developed organizations that foster both small and micro-enterprises to highly scalable enterprises.
As of 2018, examples of sending communities are parts of Syria, the Rakine state of Myanmar, Venezuela, Turkey, Democratic Republic of Congo, and the Northern Triangle.
People in transit fall into two categories. The first group is those individuals that are actually on the move -- on foot, by boat, train, or plane, via land or water, to search for safety and refuge. The second are communities of people who are in the process of seeking or have already applied for asylum, but still are in state of regulatory limbo.
People in the process of transit are more likely to be vulnerable to human smuggling, trafficking and modern-day slavery. We are in the process of seeking out both bottom-up and top-down solutions that respond directly and with agility to people in transit, providing resources and tools while preserving identity, privacy, and security.
As of 2018, examples of transit communities include Greece, Turkey, France, and Libya.
These are “host communities,” those who take in and accommodate resettled or relocated persons. Currently, the majority of refugees are being hosted in developing countries, whose economies and public infrastructure struggle to support their native and local residents, let alone an influx of refugees and migrants. They often already have high rates of unemployment, overcrowded schools and cities, economies with tedious, and potentially tenuous political situations.
It is critical that solutions are inclusive and address challenges for newcomers and existing local populations as well. We seek solutions that focus on integration, innovation, and investment, that contemplates the rights and needs of those resettled, as well as the capacity for receiving communities to accept new neighbors.
As of 2018, examples of receiving communities are: Lebanon, Jordan, Germany, the Western Sahara, and United States.
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