On route file


Gambian migrant takes his Sicilian mother back home

A young orphaned migrant fostered by a family in Italy has taken his foster mother to meet his grandmother in The Gambia. Last month, the young man, who prefers to go by his childhood nickname of Lexy, made the reverse journey with his foster mother Giusella Ferraro - this time by aeroplane. The experience has not been all smiles, he says, as it has felt “extremely emotional” to be back, but the warm welcome has made it worth it.

BBC World - Africa
Language: English
18 Mar 2021

Gambian migrant takes his Sicilian mother back home

A young orphaned migrant fostered by a family in Italy has taken his foster mother to meet his grandmother in The Gambia. Last month, the young man, who prefers to go by his childhood nickname of Lexy, made the reverse journey with his foster mother Giusella Ferraro - this time by aeroplane. The experience has not been all smiles, he says, as it has felt “extremely emotional” to be back, but the warm welcome has made it worth it.

BBC World - Africa
Language: English
18 Mar 2021

Young Senegalese more often take the life-threatening route to Europe

It was the accident with the highest number of dead migrants at sea in 2020. In October, at least 140 of the 200 migrants on the crossing from Senegal to the Canary Islands drowned when their boat caught fire due to engine problems. Among them were mostly young Senegalese. Other young people from Senegal are not deterred: they are increasingly taking this life-threatening route to Europe.

4 Mar 2021

‘I don’t see any future in Sicily’: How migrants have become scapegoats for the coronavirus crisis

The Italian island prides itself on being a welcoming crossroads of cultures, but rising populist rhetoric is changing the conversation 

read the article at .coda
Language: English
20 Dec 2020

Short documentary: 'Amadou'

Amadou is the portrait of a young Gambian man who tries to shape his life in Sicily after crossing the sea in search of a better future. He is described as the ultimate role model for new migrants. He has a job, a house and many ambitions. Amadou uses his experiences to help other migrants integrate into their new country. But even Amadou has hurdles he must overcome to make his dreams come true. Made by filmmaker Judith van Beek.

11 Dec 2020
On route file

A great thanks to Betty

Investigative journalist and co-founder of the Lost in Europe project, Sanne Terlingen, shares one of the most memorable encounters she had this year:

"Bet-el Teklemariam is an interpreter and cultural mediator. She fled Eritrea as a child and grew up in Germany. Like no other, she has an eye for obstacles that refugees encounter, things I do not see with my western eye. For example, if someone is illiterate and has never received any mail before, how does that person distinguish that one important letter from the Immigration Department from all the advertising brochures? 

Betty sees these kind or errors in our system, and tries to correct them. She hands out No advertisement-stickers to newcomers that they can put on their mailbox. This is just a small example of what Betty does.

On her initiative, we made a radio documentary about women who travel afterwards, who are immediately placed in the home of their traumatized husbands, without integration. It was Betty who discovered that these women are often victims of domestic violence, but are unable to find their way to aid agencies. During the recording I noticed how Betty was there for these women, ready to help, day and night. Despite all those requests for help (and also thanks to a fantastic family), Betty always reacts warmly when we knock on her door, and she always does triple the work you ask from her, just out of commitment. 

I have to admit that I already met Betty several years ago. But again and again, she surprises me every time I work with her. Betty is incredibly reliable and you can feel how she does her work from love and commitment.

Last Christmas, she travelled with Geesje van Haren to Calais to interpret during conversations with Eritrean refugees there. Even though she is helping so many women at home in the Netherlands, she decided that she wanted to do something for the refugees in Calais as well. February this year, she went back with her husband to bring pots full of Eritrean food and bags of sleeping bags, sturdy shoes and rain gear.

She also helped out our intern Annissa Warsame, who is working on a series about young people who committed suicide after arriving in Europe. She asked Betty to call a victim's uncle. Betty wanted to do justice to the deceased girl and her family, and called the uncle four times to be sure. So that Annissa got a full account of what was going on in the family.

Betty doesn't like to be in the spotlight. But I have rarely met anyone who is so committed to helping others from her heart. I hope that we will be able to work a lot with Betty in 2021."

3 Dec 2020


Must go to England

Hi, my name is Jamal. I am 16 years old. Right now I am staying in Dunkirk in a tent. When ISIS came in Iraq, we all left. My cousin and I are going to the UK.

30 Nov 2020

Storymap: the journey of Khalaf

In this storymap you follow the journey of Khalaf, a Sudanese boy who fled to the Netherlands at the age of 13. A journey of almost two years, straight through Africa and Europe.

13 Nov 2020


Runs a hostel for minors in Sicily

The problems for most unaccompanied migrants who stay in my hostel are the long waiting times for ID papers and the fingerprinting. They are not prepared to wait for them.  

1 Nov 2020


Still not totally safe in the UK

When I came out of the truck from Belgium I really didn't know where I was. I wasn't even able to speak the language. So I had to wait for help untill someone from Sudan came by.

15 Oct 2020
On route file

KOSOVO 2.0 talk

Lost in Europe's Ismail Einashe  will be speaking at this KOSOVO 2.0 talk and masterclass next week. He wil be discussing how migrants are represented in the media. And asking why are migrant perspectives excluded from mainstream media? who really gets to tell migrants' stories? and why does the media frame migrants either as victims or as a threat? Enter via Facebook.

26 Jun 2020
On route file

Nomination European Press Prize

Hoorray! Ismail Einashe is nominated for the European Press Prize “Distinguished Reporting Award 2020” for his publication! “The Bangladeshi shopkeepers who took on Sicily’s Cosa Nostra mafia”, published by The Sunday Times, UK
5 Jun 2020
On route file

About the plight of migrants stranded becauso of Covid-19

Lost in Europe's Ismail Einashe writes for BBC News about the plight of migrants stranded at ports, transit points or unable to return home because of Covid-19.

17 May 2020

Short documentary: 'Abdoul in Sicily'

Kiyomi Molin follows 16-year-old Abdoul from Ivory Coast in her documentary 'Abdoul in Sicily'. He left the country a few years ago. As the eldest child of the family, he felt responsible for traveling to Europe. Abdoul faced many hardships during his journey to Sicily. During the crossing on the water he had little space and luckily for Abdoul he was rescued halfway and arrived safely in Italy. He now lives in Canicattini, in a shelter for minors. Abdoul is in school and is doing his final exams, when he is done he wants to go to technical school to become a computer engineer.

6 Apr 2020

Short documentary: 'Mustafa'

In this short documentary we see the young Mustafa Balde, who traveled from Senegal to Europe. Mustafa left Senegal in 2016. First he went to Libya and a year later he made the crossing to Sicily. Once arrived, Mustafa was designated a smuggler by the skipper, when he was only 15 years old. He was detained for 49 days. When he got out of prison, it became clear that Mustafa was good at sewing, as he did in Senegal. The local shelter 'Raggio di Sole' arranged an internship at a small sewing workshop.

20 Mar 2020

How children are being smuggled from Kosovo to Italy

In radio show “Drejtësia në Kosovë” the exclusive investigation into how children are being smuggled from Kosovo into Italy. Justice in Kosovo has found that smugglers from Kosovo send minor children to Italy, where they then obtain residence permits. A criminal network has smuggled over 300 children from Malisheva and Peja who today live in camps in Italy. Researchers have filmed the mountain roads the smuggled children have to pass, and interviewed Italian prosecutors and Italian officials about the smuggling scheme of children. Also the stories of children who went down this route and of their parents.

28 Feb 2020

Smugglers abuse Italian Zampa law

In Kosovo, a highly established smuggling network has started a large flow of underage children leaving for Italy. Thanks to the 'Zampa law' (2017), they have a chance to a study- or work permit if they report to the Italian immigration service as a minor. The law was intended to prevent unaccompanied asylum children going missing, but it encourages people smuggling. "It is a company of 100,000 euros a month, but nobody seems to care," said the prosecutor in Trieste.

28 Feb 2020

Trafficked: Kosovar teenagers sent to Italy by their families

Peasant families in Kosovo see only one future: to send their underage boys abroad. That is, to Italy, with human traffickers: 4,000-4,500 euros are paid per child, a huge amount for Kosovo. Each family begins to collect it when the child destined to leave is 13 or 14, to be sure to be able to send it abroad before he turns 18. And there are those who sell the cow, some the tractor, those who make debts. In Italy many problems await.

26 Feb 2020

To England for a better life

England has become an epicenter for trafficked Vietnamese in Europe. For years, Vietnamese migrants have been smuggled into England by trucks from Belgium or France. In recent years, the people entering the country are getting younger and the ways in which traders bring people into the country is becoming more dangerous. The journey starts in Southeast Asia with routes via Russia to Europe. Most trafficked Vietnamese who reach England work in nail salons, cannabis plantations and, in the worst cases, forced prostitution. There are concerns about the capacity of European countries to combat human trafficking and to protect vulnerable individuals.

19 Feb 2020

How London was sold to a child fleeing war

Ismail Einashe reflects on being transported back to his childhood in Ethiopia, and memories of life as a refugee before he moved to the UK. 'I had last been here as a young boy in December 1994, where I had lived after fleeing the civil war in Somalia. My family were forced to leave Hargeisa city in 1988, first escaping on foot to a refugee camp in Ethiopia near the border town of Harta Sheik, where I spent the defining years of my childhood and later ended up in Bole-Mikael, neighbourhood of Addis Ababa. We were not alone.'

30 Jan 2020