The new NGO African Media Association Malta, which is made up of young refugee Somali journalists, was launched recently at Malta Microfinance in Valletta.
The team won EEA grant funding through SOS Malta and is also supported by the US Embassy. This is its first project and its aim is to inform migrants in their own language about news and how to live and integrate with others while living in Malta.
This new NGO has widespread support from existing NGOs which help migrants and who have commented that there has never been such an initiative like this before in Malta.
US Ambassador Gina Abercrombie-Winstanley welcomed the initiative and congratulated the team saying that “it will lead to better friends, better neighbours who will be more accepted for who they are and who they can become.”
Project Leader, Ahmed Nuur Ibrahim told about the deaths of many journalist friends in Somalia and the repeated death threats he received by Al Shabaab extremists when he was still in Somalia. He was also threatened in neighbouring countries too. He eventually embarked on the dangerous journey to Europe. During that journey, he suffered more threats from traffickers, had to pay ransom to be able to live and to be taken across the desert. He saw friends being tortured, abused and raped. He escaped prison twice, paid traffickers for two boat crossings and spent four days without water or food. He then spent five months in detention in Malta, a hell he does not wish to talk about.
He is now using his professional skills to make life better for people while they are in Malta, as well as spreading the message to Africa, saying that “Unless your life is threatened, stay in your country and work to bring prosperity there. The image you have of the good life in Europe is not correct.”
The team is already posting audio, video and articles to YouTube, Facebook and Twitter, and hopes to soon start broadcasting regularly.
The project welcomes support from volunteers, as well as donations of office and recording equipment.
Contact Ahmed at firstname.lastname@example.org