Rappler columnist Ana Santos among IOM 2019 Champions of Migration

MANILA, Philippines – The International Organization for Migration (IOM), in partnership with the Department of Foreign Affairs, recognized Rappler journalist Ana P. Santos as one of its Champions of Migration 2019 for her contributions “in promoting safe, orderly and humane migration for the benefit of all” on Monday, December 16.

With reporting grants from the Washington DC-based Pulitzer Center, Santos has reported on issues that affect Filipino migrants in France, the United Arab Emirates, Denmark, and Qatar. 

Her in-depth migration reports published on Rappler have won other awards and citations, such as the Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO) 2017 Award for Best Website for “Who Takes Care of Nanny’s Children?” – a collection of stories about migrant mothers in Dubai and Paris.

Santos and Rappler reporter Sofia Tomacruz also won the 2017 International Labour Organization Global Media Award for Best Report on Fair Migration for “The Debt Trap” – an investigative report that exposed how lending agencies work with recruiters to charge exorbitant interest rates on loans migrants take out for placement fees.

Most recently, CFO awarded Best Documentary Film to Rappler’s animated film, “Imprisoned: Raising My Baby Behind Bars” – written by Santos and animated by Rappler graphic artist Janina Malinis. The documentary was based on a journal a Filipino woman kept when she was imprisoned, along with her son, for unmarried sex – considered a crime in many Gulf countries. The woman shared the journal with Santos and also voiced the film, but requested that she is kept anonymous.

Three other Champion for Migration awardees were named on December 16:

CHAMPIONS. (From left) Ana P. Santos, Sister Angel Libron, WarPeace Arnold, and Dr. Edna Co. Photo by Ana Santos/Rappler

CHAMPIONS. (From left) Ana P. Santos, Sister Angel Libron, WarPeace Arnold, and Dr. Edna Co.

Photo by Ana Santos/Rappler

Sister Rosa Angelica Libron

Sister Rosa Angelica Libron of the Holy Spirit Missionary Sisters considers herself an “Overseas Christ’s Worker.” More commonly known as Sister Angel, Libron was instrumental in establishing the Filipino-Korean Community in Guri, Namyangju, and Onam, helping Filipino migrant workers and migrant wives integrate and adjust to Korean culture. In the 18 years that Libron lived in South Korea, she has come to be known as a reliable go-to for Filipinos in distress through various counseling programs.  

In 2014, Libron was one of the Presidential Awardees for Filipino Individuals and Organizations Overseas.

Dr Edna Estifania A. Co

Dr. Edna Estifania A. Co, PhD, is the director of CIFAL Philippines, a think tank on public policy, migration, and development. CIFAL developed a professional course on global migration for the DFA Office of the Undersecretary for Migrant Workers Affairs and the Overseas Worker Welfare Association. The course for mid-level career officials offers a range of topics on global migration that will prepare participants for the challenges of migration management.

WarPeace Arnold

WarPeace Arnold is an OFW-turned-successful entrepreneur in the United Arab Emirates. In a Facebook post, the Philippine embassy in the UAE congratulated Arnold for the award, saying: “Ms. Arnold has been a valuable partner of the Philippine Embassy in promoting the welfare of Filipinos in the UAE. This recognition by IOM of her contributions to the work of protecting the welfare of overseas Filipinos should serve as an inspiration for everyone that while the challenges may seem insurmountable, we should all do our part especially for those vulnerable to the vagaries of migration.” Rappler.com