IOM The Gambia
“In the future, I would like my business to grow bigger to create wealth and employment opportunities for young people in my community and the country at large.”
Before I left for Libya, I was working here as a welder. Although the business was going well, it was not enough to support all the expenses of my family. So, the idea of going to Europe via Libya came to my mind.
I went through a lot of challenges, as my family couldn’t support me financially. I had to stay at each destination I arrived at to work and earn some money to go further. It took two years before I reached Tripoli. I worked for two months to cross to Italy but was captured at sea and jailed repeatedly on all four attempts.
I thought about returning home after my life was threatened several times. At one point, our apartment was attacked. With these circumstances, I knew going back home was the best choice for me. IOM came to our rescue and I decided to come back home with the hope of rebuilding my life.
I received my reintegration support in the form of inkind assistance through procurement of welding equipment to continue and expand my business from where I left it before taking the journey to Libya. My reintegration process took three months and it went smoothly.
I am happy to be back home and am so grateful to IOM for facilitating my return and reintegration. Since I returned and started work, I have never begged for money. With my business I am able to sustain myself and my family.
My community has been supportive too, as I get patronage from them to do their welding and metalwork needs. I have young people working under me, including my brother.