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.

She found out that life in Russia was difficult for her. She had to pay high school fees for her son, but she was receiving low salary at the factory. “My cousin called me to come to her to Slovakia,” she remembered. “She promised to pay a higher salary to me, but on arrival I found out that she told me a lie. She knew I liked children and wanted me to help her with taking care of her grandchildren for her,” she added.

She crossed the Slovak border illegally. “I did not have proper documents and I was without any help from my family. I really regretted my decision,” she mentioned. She turned to the International Organization for Migration (IOM) in Slovakia thanks to which assistance she could return home to Vietnam successfully and safely.

After returning back, IOM supported her to rent a temporary accommodation for the first months so that she could have a place in Vietnam where she could live. Afterwards the situation was taken over by her children. They bought a house, where she has a room and she can rent the rest. Today, adult children are grateful to IOM for the support which enabled their mother to come back and live with them. “She was a bit upset, when she sometimes recalled those experiences. But, the most important thing is that she came back healthily,” they said. “We do not want her to depart from us anymore.”

You can watch the whole of My´s story in the documentary film:

(Personal names were published with their consent. / Names were changed for protection reasons.)

For more authentic stories of migrants who returned home from Slovakia with the help of IOM under the Voluntary Return and Reintegration Programme you can visit the website www.avr.iom.sk.

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Voluntary Return and Reintegration in Country of Origin (Individual Project). The project is co-funded by the European Union from the European Return Fund. Solidarity and Management of Migration Flows.