Our New Year’s reception on 13th February 2020 was well attended by representatives of Embassies, Consulates, Dutch government and several NGOs. The reception’s theme this year was “social cohesion” and the 145 guests listened to a speech by Chief of Mission Antionio Polosa and a short interview with Dr. Niloufar Rahim.
Mr. Polosa stressed in his speech that “Too often, we forget that migrants are already part of our lives, their contributions woven into our daily interactions. …The communities that thrive and grow are those that understand and embrace change and crucially take adequate measures in adjusting to it. But communities cannot adapt alone or let change be guided by random case.”
Dr. Rahim is the chair of the KEIHAN Foundation, an Afghan-Dutch foundation that was brought to life in 2005 by a group of Afghan students. They wanted to build a bridge between the Netherlands and Afghanistan to ensure that the integration of the Afghan community within the Netherlands was successful. Since 2005, the KEIHAN Foundation has grown into one of the most active organizations within the Afghan community in the Netherlands.
Dr. Rahim was also a participant in our Connecting Diaspora 4 Development project and recently spoke at the IOM council about her experiences.
We at IOM believe that diaspora representatives are indispensable to build social cohesion and thus seek to work with them in our various projects – such as our CD4D project or the recent PROTECT-project.