Imagine yourself moving to a foreign country, full of hope but with no clue about the language, the system, the opportunities you will find. Your goal is to find a situation better than the one you left behind, and working will obviously be one of your priorities, still one of the biggest obstacles. It is possible that initially you will not be able to have a work permit, and this not only will make you socially vulnerable, but it will push you a little away from the ideal professional goal for which you have worked so much in the past.

Those who leave their country, by choice or necessity, have aspirations and professional goals like everyone else, despite circumstances too often force them to put these dreams aside. How many talents remain hidden due to a system that does not sufficiently value the migrants it takes? How many of these, with the possibility to enroll in university, would be able to succeed and accomplish great projects, even for the country who’s hosting them?

To answer these issues and overcome the initial stalemate that too often compromises the entire process of integration and personal fulfillment, a team of young professional based in Italy has created Mygrants.

Mygrants is committed to discover the potential and talent of the migrants who arrive in Italy and access the reception routes, through a simple app that can be used with the mobile phone, which gives access to different training modules.

As Aisha Coulabily, co-founder of Mygrants, explains, the idea of using an app to support migrants in defining their ideal training and working path, is linked to the fact that most of them belong to the so-called 3.0 generation: young and super connected. Buying a phone and a sim card is among arrival’s priorities, and for this reason the team decided to take advantage of their familiarity with internet creating an app. The training modules of Mygrants are offered in 3 languages (English, French and Arabic), and their administration follows the standard Italian reception steps:

Independence, Resilience and Emancipation

The independence phase is related to their very first arrival in Italy, and aims to provide information about the reception system, the asylum application procedures and basic human rights; the resilience phase is linked to the first reception, during which, on the basis of interests and inclinations, the migrant can begin to trace his training path, which will end with the third stage of emancipation. The resilience phase is particularly delicate, considering that the migrant spends on average 250 days in the shelters, a very long period during which he cannot work and training opportunities on average are reduced. The modules offered by Mygrants in this sense are an important diversion, those who show interest and perseverance can move on to the emancipation phase, where on the basis of previous results, migrants are directed to different activities: training opportunities (university courses), work (internships training that in 98% have become open-ended contracts), entrepreneurial (through the Make My Way program, which connects the brightest ideas with the entrepreneurial realities of the territory).

More specifically, Mygrants’ services and modules offer:

1) Information: fundamental human rights, European fundamental rights, European asylum system & hotspots, disembarkation info, Italian Reception System 2) Personal Growth: SPRAR system, C3 & verbalizzazione, access to education, territorial commission, influencers 3) Opportunity: identify the opportunity, use the creativity, focus on your vision, value your ideas, ethical & sustainable thinking

The selection made by the Mygrants team during the emancipation phase is based on the knowledge and inclinations that users demonstrate in the previous phases: in fact, each module provides different tests and quizzes that are analyzed and evaluated by the team. On this basis the migrant will be addressed to one of the three destinations.

The results of Mygrants, are more than satisfactory: in few years it became refugees’ most used online platform, with about 38,000 users throughout Italy, aged between 17 and 35 years.

This, thanks to a mix of factors, including the functionality and usability of its services, a series of very important partnerships, and an effective word of mouth between users and newly arrived migrants who, once in Italy, already know Mygrants and how to register in the platform.

The collaboration with several universities, is fundamental, considering that 47% of immigrants aged 25 to 54 haven’t attended high school, and 88% haven’t had the opportunity to attend the University.

“We are pioneers in the era of non-formal education and today, we are focused on identifying various innovative solutions (formal and informal) to the many problems that immigrants face every day during their long journey home. Mygrants generates opportunities in contexts of adversity! You?”.

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