Global Forum on Migration and Development: Civil Society Day

AFFORD will play a key role at the Civil Society Day (CSD) of the Forum on Migration and Development (GFMD) being held in Quito, Ecuador, this week (January 20-24).

The overall theme of this year’s Global Forum – now in its 12th year – is Sustainable approaches to human mobility: Upholding rights, strengthening state agency, and advancing development through partnerships and collective action, while the CSD will specifically focus on issues around Transforming global migration governance: Strengthening implementation and enriching partnerships for migrants and communities.

The CSD takes place on Wednesday, January 22, with participation in the Common Space on Thursday (January 23), where delegates will engage in frank and action-oriented exchange on multi-stakeholder initiatives which foster migrants’ inclusion for sustainable development. Civil society will be encouraged to share relevant case studies, good practice and the latest policy trends, and will present outcomes and recommendations to governments during the Common Space.

The CSD will be co-chaired by AFFORD’s deputy director Stella Opoku-Owusu and include sessions on: access to services, mixed migration, labour migration, climate-related displacement and the criminalisation of migrants and those assisting them. Initiatives around the Global Compact for Migration (GCM) will also be explored.

Around 200 civil society delegates – from migrant and diaspora communities, human rights and development NGOs, labour unions, youth leaders and academia, from around the world – will seek to champion child rights, listen to young people’s perspectives, take a gender-sensitive approach, address negative narratives around migration and ensure the inclusion and leadership of migrant and diaspora communities.

‘This year people are very much focused on action and impact for migrants on the ground,’ said Stella Opoku-Owusu. ‘The international migration processes we have are useful – but we must remember those in the centre of it: the real people who are on the move, putting their lives at risk in search of better opportunities for themselves and their families. What we really need are effective actions that help them in their process of achieving that better life – here or there.’

‘We have had years of pushing for international migration processes – what happens on the ground needs to inform the processes, not the other way around. As migration and human mobility continue to change, so must we and our responses to them – how we anticipate and how quickly we react to these realities is vital.’

‘Governments understand these challenges and often it comes down to how resources are managed for the benefit of all. The more punitive measures that are applied to human mobility, the more negative narratives of migrants are perpetuated, the more complex and expensive it becomes, We need effective partnerships across all sectors – governments (national and local), civil society, private sector, international institutions, must all work creatively together to support all migrants.’

For more information about the Global Forum for Migration and Development Civil Society Day visit

If you have any questions or would like further information about AFFORD’S participation in this event please contact Chris McWilliams, lead communications consultant at AFFORD at or call +44 (0) 7793 535435. 

Keep up to date with news and updates from #GFMD_CSD #XIICumbreGFMDQuito throughout the week on social media @AFFORD_UK on Twitter, @AFFORD_UK on Instagram, AFFORD.UK on Facebook.

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