Photo Credit: Dr. Roland Holou (www.RolandHolou.com).
Human migration is a universal problem that is here to stay. Human beings, and even wild animals, move because they are usually trying to solve a problem. For instance, when the weather is getting bad, many animal species know how to migrate to avoid exposing themselves to environmental conditions that can threaten their existence. Certain animals that cannot migrate, hibernate to avoid the bad weather like winter! Wild animals that are unable to migrate nor fully hibernate, usually suffer during the rough season, and some even die!
When human beings move, they also have in mind the notion of finding a better life. I do not think many people move to a new place just to willingly expose themselves to detrimental conditions that will hurt or kill them unless they are terrorists, which is a bad thing. However, because of political limitations, human beings do not have the freedom to migrate to wherever they would like. In most cases, people are restrained to their native countries and unable to move abroad because they lack finances, government approval, connections, vision, and support from family or friends. Usually, when human beings manage to leave their home country for another country, they do not easily return back, unless something threatens their dream abroad, or some better opportunities open up in their home country, or they are repatriated from their residence country back to their native country. Even so, those who are repatriated want to return back to the country they just came from!
When it comes to the diaspora of the developing countries, if stinginess, unforgiveness, and selfishness can be added to the already-complicated equations among the diaspora and those residing in the same country, most of the immigrants allow pride to get in their way and would prefer dying abroad than returning back to their native country. It is in this critical condition that most countries are begging their diasporas to give back or to invest in their development.
Nevertheless, a handful of educated people living in the Diaspora would like to return to their country of origin or country of residence, but in most cases, very few organized structures exist to facilitate that type of movement. Some people don’t even know who to talk to or where to start in order to return to their home country. This is because many developed countries do not have a clear plan to integrate or incorporate their diaspora and returning immigrants into the development of their own country. Many immigrants have returned or have been returned to their home country, but have failed due to a lack of programs to help them integrate into their new environment. Numerous traveling agencies and businesses assist people in planning their travels, but very few specialize in helping diaspora members return to their home country even if it is for a short stay to contribute to their nation’s development. After arriving in a new country and being surprised by the many hurdles they have to overcome, once realizing all the obstacles, certain immigrants oftentimes want to return home but lack the funding to do so.
The problem is more complex for educated people living abroad. Indeed, some diaspora members studied at a very high cost; some may have even acquired debts (e.g. student loan, cost of living abroad), and after graduation, they would like to return back to their home country, but unfortunately, they can’t afford it, because the salary they will make in their home country cannot allow them to pay their debt and have a decent life. Furthermore, if they return, they will likely not find the tools and resources to practice what they have learned. However, if someone (e.g. government, nonprofit) can assist them in paying off that debt and having a decent job, some diaspora members would love to return home. A solution must be found for this global problem.
In our next post, we will discuss what DiasporaEngager is doing to solve this complex problem. Please stay tuned! Meanwhile, you can join our efforts by registering a free account at https://diasporaengager.com/miniRegister