Who we are
Diaspora Forum for Development (DFD) is a Diaspora-led platform of networks and organisations from Africa, Latin America, Asia and Europe.
DFD was formally registered as a foundation in the city of The Hague, The Netherlands on October 2007. DFD envisions a just and humane society where migrants - both men and women - are equally empowered and visible and can exercise their fundamental human rights. DFD recognizes the unique transnational role of migrants as actors in development. It seeks to harness the capacities of migrants so that they can actively participate in social, economic, and political sphere and contribute to initiating viable interventions to improve the quality of life of migrants, their families and their wider communities.
The Diaspora Forum for Development was established after an expert meeting on “Diaspora Organizations: Building Partnerships in Challenging Times” organized by Oxfam Novib in cooperation with African Diaspora Policy Centre. Twenty-one diaspora organizations were represented from Argentina, Sudan, Philippines, Somalia, Bolivia, Cameroon, Afghanistan, Ghana, Guinea, Burundi, Congo, Tanzania, Turkey, Bangladesh, Ethiopia, and Indonesia. The 21 participants unanimously decided to form the Diaspora Forum for Development (DFD) to serve as a coordinating body of diaspora organizations active in migration and development. DFD outlined 4 urgent tasks of the platform namely:
DFD mirrors the diversity of migrant communities engaged in migration and development issues. Members originate from different countries and have come to the Netherlands for different reasons. Some fled for safety; others came for work, to study or for family reunification. They are organized around various thematic development priorities such as peace building, economic empowerment, remittances and microfinance, human and migrants’ rights, gender and violence against women, youth, education, health (HIV/Aids), IT and development, good governance and democracy. A good number of DFD member organizations have local counterparts and support projects in their countries of origin. This diversity enables DFD to cover a wide range of development issues and establish a common stock of multi-faceted knowledge, skills and expertise from its members. Hence, its principle of complementarity in diversity allows these individual strengths to become part of the common good.
As of July 2009, the membership of DFD has grown from 23 to more than 40 including large networks and federations such as ENNOS (Ethiopian/Netherlands Network for Development), FAVON (Afghan diaspora platform), Recogin (Ghanaian diasporas), Sudan Civil Society Forum (Sudanese diasporas), Multicultural Women Peacemakers Network, Migrant women Initiatives in Netherlands for Development (MIND), etc. Countries presently represented in DFD are: Afghanistan, Argentina, Bangladesh, Bolivia, Brazil, Burundi, Cameroon, Colombia, Congo, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Georgia, Ghana, Guinea, Indonesia, Kenya, Mexico, Nigeria, Peru, the Philippines, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan, Tanzania, Turkey, Venezuela and Uganda.