Since 2014, more than 30,000 migrants have died trying to cross the Mediterranean Sea to reach Europe. But this number is only an estimate based on documented deaths, wrecks, and bodies found. There have been many more due to the pandemic, making the Mediterranean “the biggest cemetery in the world”. Targeting migrants is almost impossible, due to their political status and geographical situation. So we had to find a new and surprising way to communicate with people who are incommunicado, giving migrants a choice to stay in their home countries rather than having to take the risk of traveling abroad.


New Hope Foundation is an NGO that promotes projects to help disadvantaged people gain access to first-world opportunities, primarily education and training. Their data confirmed what most people already knew – that a large number of migrants who head for places such as Italy, Spain, and France head off from Morocco’s coastline at night.


We handed out parcels to migrants on Tangiers’ beaches (North Morocco), who were about to get on boats to undertake this perilous journey. The parcels included a tin of (what looked like) sardines wrapped with a letter from someone who had attempted this journey before in order to persuade them to think about the daunting journey ahead. Instead of sardines, the tin contained a personal item that had been found floating in sea water as a reminder of what could happen if things go wrong.


This idea also changed people’s perspectives regarding making a dangerous voyage. Highlighting the fact that without them, their own countries might not be able to change its fortunes (due to a migration of skills and knowledge). After handing out the parcels, 27% of those interviewed considered changing their minds about crossing the Mediterranean Sea. 13% chose to stay and start a new life in Morocco. 5% Were integrated into local education with the help of the New Hope Foundation. Abeda, Aya, Zola, Etienne, Traore and others made it safely. But back home.

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2022 Dubai Lynx

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