Archive for migration

Displacement and Diaspora: What Does It Mean?

Posted in Awareness, CULTURE, North America with tags , , , , on August 1, 2010 by Mijiza Zeyzey

Displacement and Diaspora are terms meaning movement of mass numbers of people. When mass numbers of people are forced into migration, refuge, or exile from their native homeland for safety and shelter, it is called displacement. When mass numbers of people are forced into leaving their homes, traditions, culture, language, and religion, it is called Diaspora. Both displacement and Diaspora have long term effects on emotions, consciousness, and identity.

Justine Gaga – Artist

Posted in CULTURE, Humanity, NEWS, South America, Spotlight with tags , , , , , on June 29, 2010 by Mijiza Zeyzey

In an interview with Colombia Reports, Justine said,

“My work is about solitude, people who are alone and in need of protection . . . I lived by myself for a long time and not because I wanted to.”

Justine found inspiration in loneliness. Her art explores the isolation that comes from migration or being exiled from your home. For Justine, the theme of loneliness is both personal and political.

In Colombia, where Justine is living and working, there are an estimated 4.9 million refugees. Justine was funded to come to Colombia and hold workshops for poor, predominantly Afro-Colombian, women and children living outside Medellin.

Refugees have been forced to leave their homes due to armed conflict in Colombia. Afro-Colombians have been targeted by illegal armed groups. Justine learned about the conflict from the mouths of children,

“They were very sad, they told me that where they come from there is war . . . to remove violence from their minds by helping them to express themselves . . . perhaps they will learn that life is not only violence.”

Children Who Migrate to Work

Posted in Awareness, Humanity, Mother Africa, NEWS, Our Health with tags , , , on June 11, 2010 by Mijiza Zeyzey

Berikisu, an 8 year old in Accra, the capital of Ghana, trades her education and health for money. She balances metal pans of food on her head to carry to customers all day. The weight of the food as caused her persistent pain in her neck and back. At times she falls to the ground. She told IRIN reporters,

“I have a headache and I want my mother to buy me some medicine. I always have pains, in my chest. I have never been to the hospital.”

Berikisu came to Accra to work as thousands of other Ghana’s children do. The U.S. State Department Trafficking in Persons Report estimates over 30,000 children work as porters. Even more children are sex workers.

Sheema Sen Gupta of UNICEF said,

“These kids are supposed to be in school. Their health is compromised. We also know that these kids have babies on the streets, which is a maternal health issue.”

In Ghana children’s rights are addressed in dozens of policies, although legislation is not often enforced. Agencies are trying to prevent children from needing to migrate to find work just to eat. Schools are opening so children can eat where they learn.

African Palestinians

Posted in Europe with tags , , on May 29, 2010 by Mijiza Zeyzey

African Palestinians live in parts of the West Bank, Jenin, Rafah, Jericho, and Jerusalem.  The Jerusalem African Palestinian community is located in a neighborhood that was once home to a prison. It dates back to 1260 BC and is known as the Prison of Slaves.

Africans of Sudan, Senegal, Nigeria, Chad, and other countries migrated to Palestine for the jihad, the struggle to defend the Muslin nation of Palestine. Although Africans have been in Palestine for centuries, most people know little about this migration.

Recommended reading on the subject:

The Cambridge Survey of World Migration

Canaan in the Second Millennium