06.04.2009 - UNESCO Social and Human Sciences

The Spanish MDG Fund launches a project to protect and promote the rights of China’s young migrants

By addressing several Millenium Development Goals (MDGs), a project endorsed by the UNDP-Spain MDG Achievement Fund plans to ensure that the benefits of development reach China’s vulnerable young migrants. It has been launched through the Youth, Employment and Migration Programme, to a total budget of over 7 million USD. Nine UN agencies will be working on the programme, including the International Labour Organization (ILO), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and UNESCO.

Policy reform and new legislation for migrants’ rights has been introduced in recent years in China, but progress remains gradual and uneven. This venture seeks to set up a common strategy to address the needs of the most vulnerable migrant workers. It will explore innovative solutions and good practices, and will seek to strengthen institutional capacities to effectively develop and implement the laws and policies in this area.

Initiatives on which UNESCO will focus include:

  • Enhancing the role of existing community centres to provide gender responsive information, learning opportunities and referral services. Special activities will be set up to better protect female migrants;
  • awareness-raising aimed at young migrants, and capacity-building for local authorities and civil society in order to meet migrant needs better. UNESCO will focus on promoting the rights of rural migrants and improving their access to vocational training;
  • a team made up of young migrants and UN experts will consider the knowledge that young people should have in labour, education, health and gender perspectives, and prepare training material relative to their findings that will be disseminated through community centres. Through cultural and recreational activities and awareness-raising, the community centres will aim to facilitate the integration of migrants into urban society.

Five cities that receive a large number of migrants have been chosen initially for the programme’s implementation: Changsha, Hangzhou, Shenzhen, Tianjin and Xian. The programme has a duration of three years.

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