Senegal – Guaranteeing "A New Opportunity" and development projects at home: VIS commitment

13 April 2021

(ANS - Dakar) - Migration must be a right, not necessarily an obligation dictated by situations of necessity. And when life leads you to have to retrace your steps, then the help of someone who gives you "A New Opportunity" is essential to starting over. The Salesian NGO of the "International Volunteering for Development" (VIS) firmly believes in these principles. And the story of Elhadi Ndiaye, a Senegalese worker and father, is a perfect testimony to this.

Elhadi says:

My name is Elhadi Ndiaye and I am the father of six children. I have 19 years of migratory experience in Italy, where I worked as a worker in a leather and hide processing factory and later as a seller of costume jewelery and footwear.

Over the years my residence permit expired and my self-employment could not guarantee its renewal. I had become an undocumented migrant and was no longer able to meet my and my family's needs in Senegal.

I therefore decided to take advantage of the assisted voluntary repatriation opportunity offered by VIS as part of the UNO project - "A New Opportunity". This allowed me to return to Senegal permanently and to develop my own business project.

As soon as I arrived, through the UNO project I had a grant to start a sheep breeding and fattening project in Gossas: I buy sheep at low prices and then resell them at a higher price once they have reached a good fattening condition. In addition, during the wintering period, the profits from sheep farming allowed me to cultivate a two-hectare land in my village, to develop food crops.

Currently, these breeding and cultivation activities have allowed me to successfully reintegrate into my community, abandon the migration project and take care of my family and the education of my children.

Senegal has 105,937 people in Italy, equal to 4.19% of the foreign population residing in Italy. Among them, 39.9% are inactive or unemployed. Thanks to the UNO project, VIS works to offer an opportunity for redemption and socio-economic reintegration to people who wish to return to their country of origin, providing support to their entrepreneurial activities that contribute to the development of the territory.


ANS - “Agenzia iNfo Salesiana” is a on-line almost daily publication, the communication agency of the Salesian Congregation enrolled in the Press Register of the Tibunal of Rome as n 153/2007.

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