IOM Client Stories

Amin from Somalia: I Want to Help People Who Were Not So Lucky as Me

“We feel good here, we have a place to sleep, food to eat and we are safe – what else can we wish for?“ This is how young Amin from Somalia describes his temporary stay in Slovakia. Amin is one of the refugees whom Slovakia provided a temporary shelter on its territory. Together with his mother and siblings, he was included in the resettlement program of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and International Organization for Migration (IOM) transferred them to Slovakia. They are accommodated in the Emergency Transit Centre (ETC) in Humenne.

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Sofia from Ukraine: I Want to Take a Chance to Start a New Life

Sofia Inna left her home in Ukraine when she was 20 years old. The motivation behind leaving Ukraine were family reasons, desire to become independent and to make more money. She spent 10 years abroad in various countries but most of the time she lived in Slovakia where she managed to work as an occasional helper.

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Professionals Trained by IOM Helped with a Rescue of Marika from Hands of Human Traffickers

Marika lived with her family in very poor conditions. With a little child and unfinished education she could not find a job that would help her to improve her bad social situation. When the neighbour Jozef came with the job offer in the United Kingdom, she started to think about leaving Slovakia. She hesitated for a while since the job condition was not to take the child with her. However, the vision of a better life and sufficient amount of money for the family convinced her to go.

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Ricky Lagarde from Philippines: After Returning Home with IOM Help I Can Support My Family

Mr. Lagarde left Philippines for Slovakia to earn enough money for the livelihood of his family. During more than six years abroad he had several jobs – he worked as a waiter, a driver or a warehouseman. Due to problems with his employer he was left without a salary and a residence permit in Slovakia. In that moment he decided to return home and asked IOM for help.

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Sheremet from Kosovo: With IOM Assistance we Managed to Create our Own Home

Story of a 31 year-old Sheremet Beqiri begins in Kosovo, where he lived with his family at his cousin´s apartment. Unfortunately, they could no longer stay at his place and so they decided to leave the country. On their way to Eastern Europe, Mr Beqiri and his family were arrested in Slovakia.

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Rahima and Laimah from Afghanistan: We Were Given a Chance at a New Life, We Want to Take It

Rahima was only 18 years old when she became an orphan in war-torn Afghanistan together with her 15-year-old sister Laimah. The situation in the country was bad and so the sisters decided to flee to Iran where their uncle lived with his family. Without any money and documents they managed to arrive to Iran after many days of tortuous journey with the help of smugglers. Upon their arrival the sisters’ uncle pledged to repay the debt they incurred during the journey. Even though they succeeded to escape from Afghanistan, their life in Iran was not easy. They felt committed to their uncle who took care of them as much as he could.

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Be careful! Even your relative or friend can be a human trafficker

Siblings Adam and Majka left for England together with Robo who was their relative. He suggested to their mother that he would accommodate both of them at his place and would help them find a job through an employment agency. Their mother trusted him enough to allow her children to go with him.

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Nadif from Somalia: I’m Determined to Start Over and Help Other People

“I would like to work in the health sector and help people,“ says 27-year-old Nadif with a hope in his voice. He is worried that he has had to rely on the help of others until now. He had to leave his home in Somalia when he was only 10. As he admits, unlike many others, he was lucky to come to the refugee camp in Eritrea together with his entire family. The life in camp was modest and monotonous and the conditions of an Eritrean dessert made it also very harsh.

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Afghan Family: We Want to Have a Place That We Can Finally Call Home

Fereshteh was born in 1971 in Afghanistan, but war drove her out of her home and she fled to Iran. Here she spent more than half of her life. She was accompanied by her future husband when escaping to Iran, later their close relatives joined them in the country. They spent the first few months in a refugee camp, later they rented a small apartment. But life in Iran was difficult. Neither Fereshteh nor her husband managed to obtain legal documents for stay or work.

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Ms. My from Vietnam: I am happy that I could return back to my children

Ms. My left her native Vietnam and departed for Russia to help her sister. Ms. My lived with her son for some time in Moscow where she worked in a garment factory. “I did not have enough money and experience to do my own business,” she said.

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