Strengthening the capacity of civil society organizations in migration governance

The SDC-CSOnetMADE project is a collaborative initiative between CSOnetMADE donor organization, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and the CSOnetMADE convening organizations to enhance the participation of the civil society organizations (CSOs) in migration management in Nigeria.

This is to be achieved by building and strengthening the CSOs capacity to actively manage and effectively engage in the national migration governance process. This will include drawing on the best and current knowledge on how to work in collaboration with diverse relevant actors in order to produce high quality results.

The project activity aimed at building the capacities of CSOs in the three Zones in focus (North Central, Southeast and Southwest) and by extension, building the Network membership strength across these Zones and further building the capacities of the new members.

In line with this,  the project include establishing project operational structure; enhance the skills, competences and capacities of zonal CSOs on migration-related issues for better and collaborative advocacy in line with the global vision for migration and increasing public awareness on migration issues with specific reference to each zone.

The workshop was held in Owerri , Imo state for South-east, Lagos for Southwest and Akwanga Nasawara state for North-central

The capacity building workshop with the objective of enhancing the skills, competences and capacities of CSOs on migration related issues for better advocacy on delivering with one voice in line with the global vision for migration, had in attendance 31 (13 female and 18 male) participants which include 27 drawn from organizational members of CSOnetMADE and the CSO database of the National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons (NCFRMI), the South-east Zonal Coordinator of National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons (NCFRMI) and resource person – the Deputy Director of the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development.

The 2-day workshop was divided into sessions which included the pre and post-evaluation, training session, and breakout session to develop the migration specific issues in the Southeast and advocacy strategies for the zone.

Pre and post evaluation test

To access the participants’ knowledge and understanding of the subject matter before and after the workshop, a pre and post-evaluation test was carried out. It featured ten (10) questions relating to the areas to be covered in the training.

28 participants took the pre and post-evaluation test, before the training only 45{945d0b0d1062adbd966b8a41e51b83ecd23d4911f31d416688c123cf0218c61a} of the participants scored slightly above average with 17 participants scoring below average mark.

However, the post-evaluation test at the end of the training showed an increase in the understanding, knowledge, and performance of the participants with an 98{945d0b0d1062adbd966b8a41e51b83ecd23d4911f31d416688c123cf0218c61a} increase with only 2 participants scoring below-average mark.

The training session

The modules developed to achieve the aim of the workshop are as follows


The first module, training on basic migration trends, educated the participants on the basic migration concepts, challenges of migrants and what can be done to help mitigate these challenges. This module also gave a snapshot of migration in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Global Compact for Migration (GCM), their processes, objectives and the National implementation plan.

The second module with the topic, “National migration governance: The role of CSOs,” intimated the participants on the governance structure available for migration governance, and the role of CSOs in the architecture of migration governance in Nigeria.

The third module, Migration specific issues in the Southeast, took the methodology of a holistic participatory approach i.e. the participants were divided into three (3) groups to develop the migration specific issues in the Southeast. This approach was employed because the participants’ day to day activities are in the southeast; hence, they are more conversant with the happenings in the Southeast. Identification of the migration specific issues are for enhancing state and national level advocacy for the implementation of the National migration policy and its related policies and programmes. The migration specific issues identified are

Internal migration ,Labour migration, Smuggling of migrants, Urbanization, Internally displacement, Asylum seekers, Return migrants, Irregular migration, Human trafficking, Poor Diaspora engagement, Remittance, Education migration, Data, No operational offices for NAPTIP, Non-inclusion of Southeast returnees in the AVRR programmes, Absence of efficient international airports on the southeast, Lack of synergy among CSOs, Poverty, Loss of values ,Poor awareness and sensitization about migration issues, Emotional blackmail, Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), No political will to re-integrate returnees, No funding of migration issues by donor agencies, Child harvesting, Trauma, Poor coordination among agencies, Stigmatization and discrimination of returnees, No empowerment/skill acquisition and Ecological & climate change problems

The fourth module, training on skills for strategic advocacy, focused on building the advocacy skills of the CSOs. A major activity of CSOs is carrying out advocacy for their target beneficiaries. Having identified the major migration specific issues in the Southeast, what follows is carrying out advocacies to relevant bodies for better implementation and formulation of policies.

In order to ensure a better understanding of the fourth module and guarantee that practical actions would be taken in strategizing for advocacy, the participants were divided into 3 groups to develop advocacy tactics for practical action.

Fifth module: The final module which was based on networking and collaborative intervention, focused on enlightening the participants on the need to work collaboratively in order to achieve better results and also to attain unity in ensuring migration is safe, voluntary and done in dignity. The module responded to one of the issues identified as migration specific in the zone namely, lack of synergy among CSOs. This module achieved its aim of making the participants realize the need for effective collaboration.

Conclusion: At the end of the 2 day training, participants showed a built and equipped capacity to carry out various advocacies on migration issues to the right stakeholders with specific reference to Southeast migration issues.