Developing effective up-to-date programs that benefit migrant workers is one of the primary goals of RMMRU. Below is a list of the programs RMMRU has engaged in during the past:

Time Frame: 15 May 2022 – 15 October, 2022
Supported by: Migrant Forum in Asia (MFA)

RMMRU implemented the project named “Supporting and Strengthening Civil Society’s Response in Assisting Migrant Worker Populations Impacted by COVID-19 in Destination and Origin Countries” supported by the Migrant Forum in Asia (MFA) in membership with the International Organization for Migration (IOM). This project was implemented in different countries like as Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Indonesia simultaneously.

This project was implemented in 22 districts of Bangladesh including Dhaka, Gazipur, Cumilla, Tangail, Munshiganj, Jhenaidah, Narail, Bhola, Pirojpur, B.Baria, Narsingdi, Narayanganj, Manikganj, Rajshahi, Joypurhat, Rajbari, Faridpur, Moulvibazar, Bagerhat, Dinajpur, Khulna, and Sylhet. The duration of the project was 15 May 2022 - 15 October, 2022.

Objective of the Project
1. To provide all kinds of assistance to the vulnerable returnee migrants and migrant family members who are exposed to multiple risks of vulnerability due to COVID -19 pandemic.
2. To economically reintegrate the affected returned migrants and the migrant family members.
Major Outcome of the Project
RMMRU provided 41,09,406 taka as in kind and cash grant to 313 vulnerable returnee migrants for reintegration purposes with the support of MFA in coordination with 3 migration organizations. It helped to develop entrepreneurs among vulnerable returnee migrants as part of economic reintegration. Small businesses (tea stalls, mobile vegetable markets on vans, auto-rickshaws, grocery stores, sewing machines, etc.), cattle ranching, etc., as well as medical treatment are included in this support.
RMMRU also developed and maintained a database to accumulate the returnees’ data with relevant information and also collected migrants’ cases highlighting their untold stories and documented accordingly. It also developed partnership among member organisations which is an example of collective implementation of humanitarian support.

Time Frame: January 2019 to Auguest 2021
Funded By: Manusher Jonno Foundation (MJF)

Labour migration has emerged as one of the primary concerns for economic and social development of our country. Over the last few years, it has been the highest foreign exchange earning sector in Bangladesh. The limitation of local employment opportunity insists migrants to move for overseas employment. A numbers of less skilled, semi-skilled and skilled labors are working in Middle East and other countries. Over the times the flow of migration is increasing and Bangladesh is the eighth highest remittance receiving country in the world. The general perception is that most of the migrants are economically well off. But unfortunately, our study shows that 51% of migrant households experienced, harassment, torture and degrading behavior during their migration process. Among this group, 19% could not go abroad after paying money and 31% faced mistreated and inhuman behavior at destination country. Average 50% of these migrants and their families are socially excluded and deprive of facilities including jurisdiction system, budget allocation, migration policy, reintegration policy, etc.


The Goal of the project is to increase the opportunity of socially and economically excluded groups to benefit from migration in all three phases, before, during and upon return; particularly for women.


Our experience help to design the new plan in the title of ‘Social and Economic Exclusion and Migration: Inclusion of Excluded Groups into Migration Process with major dimensions in women migration its geographic and thematic coverage. Like previous years we willimplement the field activities through developing a partnership with 2 different local NGO’s at 8 unions in 8 Upazillas under 2 districts in Bangladesh. RMMRU also implement and develop an emergency support centre for female migrants and also at Gazipur district. We plan to focus on policy including situation analysis on social cost, policy advocacy in a different context of women migration, reintegration policy, Shadow report. Awareness campaigning activities by engaging community group/representative of returnees in collecting evidence-based information, legal assistance for affected women migrants and left behind families.  Develop a model of skill development training course for potential female migrant workers. Social and economic reintegration support for women returnees etc. The comprehensive initiatives of the project will support to ensure migration governance and establish migrant rights in COD and COO. In project period it plans to reach at least 40% of migrants and left behind families as targeted stakeholders and beneficiaries.

Output and Major Activities

Issue-based consultation and Policy documents on return reintegration, develop Shadow report for UN, Returnee reintegration through Psychosocial, economic reintegration and business advisory support, address the vulnerability of returnees and establish access to justice, skill development for create the scope of decent job for female migrant workers, establish of Caregiver training/H&life skill course, develop training module, IEC materials, documentary and Information dissemination through awareness activities etc.  

Direct Beneficiaries:   project has targeted potential, affected and returnee women migrant workers, their families and children’s as direct beneficiaries.

 Major Stalkeholders: MOFA, MoEWOE, BMET, DEMO, TTC, BAIRA, NHRC, Ministry of Labour, Local Government, PKB, NLASO, CSO’s of destination, etc.

Time Frame: August 2020- 15 May 2021
Funded By: Winrock International
RMMRU implemented the “SafeStep” project in 4 unions of Kaliakair Upazila, Gazipur. It aims to lessen the vulnerability of migrants and enable better access to information through mobile technology. ‘SafeStep’ is a migrant-friendly mobile application designed to promote safe and orderly labour migration and enhance fair, ethical, and responsible overseas recruitment practice particularly from Bangladesh to the Gulf countries. Innovative functions like Migration Checklist, Budget Calculator, e-Learning and Help Center have been operationalised in the SafeStep application to address the information gaps, facilitate digital documentation for users, analyses the cost and benefit of migration as well.

This project empowered local community by forming 4 community based ‘Migrant Rights Protection Committees’ (MRPCs), consists of 44 members, at the union level. These committees are enhanced by the knowledge on the application to promote safe migration in their locality. RMMRU reached at least 25000 prospective migrants, returnee migrants, sub-agents, members of counter-trafficking committees CTCs), and entrepreneurs of Union Digital Centers (UDCs) and migrant community, government officials, policymakers, UN Agencies, INGOs, NGOs, civil society organisations, recruiting agencies and local stakeholders. Under this project, 600 pictorial manual/user guide kit and 20,000 leaflets has been developed on SafeStep application and disseminated among community people.

Time Frame: July 2010 – June 2017
In partnership with: University of Sussex, UK


Funded by: DFID, UK

The Research Program Consortium (RPC) is a collective of international research organizations spearheaded by the University of Sussex. Migrating Out of Poverty is a program lead by the RPC that is dedicated to providing research evidence that contributes to improved policies surrounding the well being of poor migrants, their communities and countries. As a member of the RPC, RMMRU, hopes to engage in innovative research, capacity building and communications activities ensuring an equal amount of impact and global reach through international academic collaboration. You can read more about this exciting program here!

Time Frame: August 2013 - December 2016
Funded By: Manusher Jonno Foundation (MJF)

RMMRU is currently conducting the second phase of the AMR program. Through the AMR, RMMRU is increasing opportunities for safer migration at the grassroots level while creating awareness among different service providers about safer migration. This project is strongly linked with the Migrants’ Rights Protection Committees (MRPCs) and works with the MRPCs to distribute information and increase access to safer migration. The AMR operates through building the capacity of District Employment and Manpower Offices (DEMO) and Bank Officials, running awareness campaigns to garner media attention, promoting various available skill development programs, and influencing policy through policy dialogue. The AMR exemplifies a bottom-up approach to grassroots issues surrounding migration and showcases RMMRU’s commitment to change at a micro level. Through the AMR, RMMRU is able to ensure better services and better access to services for Bangladeshi migrant workers.

Currently, RMMRU is waiting on the approval of the third phase of the AMR program. This phase will hopefully include an expansion and establishment of regional MRPC offices, capacity building for female migrants, stakeholder training in the new 'Overseas Employment and Migration Act 2013,' amongst other projects.

Time Frame: May 2010- February 2014

Funded By: Winrock International, Bangladesh; RMMRU

This program is a part of Actions for Combating Trafficking in Persons (ACT), implemented by Winrock International Bangladesh. ACT hopes to influence migration policy through imparting comprehensive training, filling the information gap between potential and departing migrants, reducing fraudulent practices in the labour migration process, spreading awareness about workers rights to potential and departing migrants, and planned migration. Furthermore the program aims to increase the capacity of the Bureau of Manpower Employment and Training (BMET), DEMO, Technical Training Centers (TTCs), and recruiting agencies in order to better accommodate safer migration.

Run Time: June 2003-January 2010

In Partnership with: The University of Sussex

Commissioned by: Department for International Development (DFID), UK

Department for International Development (DFID), UK

The DRC on Migration, Globalization and Poverty in Bangladesh was designed to focus on both internal and international flows of people covering a continuum of movements classified as both ‘forced’ and ‘voluntary’. This program established a coalition of partners to cultivate sustained and in-depth research while increasing the capacity of young academics in the field of migration by offering fellowship, internship and training. Furthermore, the research produced by this program aided in integral policy advocacy and changes to ensure good governance in migration. During the project period, several research works were commissioned thereby enriching the existing resource pool and intellectual capacity among young professionals. These works include: Impact of Internal Migration on Certain Sectors of Rural and Urban Economics: the Case of Garment Workers, Child Migration for Work, Role of Informal Recruitment Industry in the Labour Migration Process and Vulnerability, and Social Protection of Bangladeshi Migrant Workers in the Gulf Countries

Run time: 2006 - 2009

Commissioned by: Manusher Jonno Foundation


CABSLAM is an important grassroots level intervention conducted by RMMRU. The over-arching goals of CABSLAM were to promote short-term labour migration as a development-enhancing tool and to influence policy for good governance in migration management. CABSLAM is also responsible for initiating the Migrant Rights’ Protection Committees (MRPCs) , paving the way for bottom-up grassroots advocacy and leadership surrounding migration. Moreover, CABSLAM trained and motivated bank officials to provide better services to migrant workers and their families, developed a pre-departure orientation training module for out-going female migrant workers, and conducted a nation-wide thematic media campaign on safe labour migration . Additionally, CABSLAM created a library and web based information system to increase accessibility to migration resources for researchers, teacher and students alike.

Run time: 2006-2011

Funded by: Department for International Development (UK)

This program was designed to produce measurable impacts on the price, speed and growth of remittances in Bangladesh. The program encouraged the flow of remittances through formal channels to poor and rural Bangladeshi households. Additionally, it fostered an enabling environment for remittances to be used for private micro enterprise development to enhance growth and poverty reduction. These goals were accomplished by creating awareness amongst migrants, potential migrants, and their families about remittance transfer and effective utilization. Furthermore, RMMRU conducted research on remittance flows and utilization, trained local opinion leaders, journalists and bank officials, developed and disseminated information via media campaigns, and helped the Bureau of Manpower Employment and Training with data collection. 

Funded by: Department for International Development (DFID) through Development Research Centre (DRC) on Migration, Globalization and Poverty

This program was developed in response to two studies conducted under the auspices of the DRC. The project had two components with two mutually exclusive sets of objectives. The first component under the theme,Campaign to promote the rights of the camp dwelling Urdu speaking community in Bangladesh, was geared towards promoting effective citizenship rights of the members of the community, accessing basic rights (shelter, employment and vote) and a formal declaration from the Government that Biharis are Bangladeshis. RMMRU accomplished these tasks by publishing a policy brief (August 2007), issuing press statements, translating the policy brief into Bangla, urging the government to recognize all members of the camp dwelling as Bangladeshi nationals, and facilitating the exercise of effective citizenship rights by enrolling members of the community as voters. Furthermore, RMMRU published multiple newspaper articles on the issue to gain national awareness on the issue. RMMRU also produced a short-film to advocate for Biharis rights and break the stigma around the community. As a direct result of RMMRU’s efforts, the High Court has directed the Election Commission to enroll the Biharis in the voter list as Bangladesh citizens.

The second component of the program,Promoting graduate level studies on nursing to facilitate skilled migration, campaigned for the introduction of a 4-year Bachelor’s course on Nursing in public / private universities / medical colleges. To accomplish this goal, RMMRU produced a policy brief on the issue. Following the policy brief, RMMRU organized a consultation meeting with key stakeholders and a national consultation. Consequently, the Government of Bangladesh formed a task force on the issue that is geared at restructuring nursing education in Bangladesh.

Run time: 2004 - 2006

Funded by:Department for International Development (DFID), UK

SAMReN is a network of academics, researchers, civil society activists and migrant support groups which facilitates the institutionalized sharing of knowledge and information on migration among South Asian scholars. SAMReN aimed at developing the capacity of young academics and researchers on migration through training; to engage in policy advocacy; to encourage and facilitate data sharing between stakeholders in different countries; to help to facilitate the sharing of information through interactive websites, regional seminars and training courses; and to provide broad based and reliable information and options to policy makers at national and regional levels. In Novemver 2004, RMMRU launched a SAMRen website to enable the above goals. Additionally, SAMRen offered five research fellowships to young professionals from South Asia. One of the major achievements of SAMReN was successfully organizing a Ten-day Residential Training Workshop on ‘Migration, Globalization, Security and Development’. The workshop enhanced understanding of migration processes in South Asia.

Run time: 2005 - 2006

Funded by: British High Commission, Bangladesh 

This programmed was developed to foster social and cultural exchange between communities in Bangladesh and the United Kingdom (UK), recognize the contribution of the 1st generation expatriate Bangladeshis and the hardship they went through as emigrants, consolidate cultural ties with young British-Bangladeshis and the people of Bangladesh, and sensitize young British-Bangladeshis about the rich cultural heritage of Bangladesh. These goals were accomplished through: seminars, talks and photo exhibitions, the development of a website with information about Bangladesh, and the production of a music album of young British-Bangladeshis living in the UK and young Bangladeshis in Bangladesh.

Run time: 2005 - 2006

Funded by: Foreign and Commonwealth Office, UK 


The aim of this program was to produce several dramas through which information on safe migration and harmful effects of migrating abroad through irregular paths could be provided to a broader audience. Among the developed countries, the UK is one of the major destinations for Bangladeshi emigrants. There are different formal avenues, like student visa or work visa, through which one can enter the UK. Therefore, people with specific skills can migrate through formal channels. The dramas, along with other campaign materials disseminated this information about formal channels of migration. Additionally RMMRU distributed information about current UK and EU policies on deportation of irregular migrants. The program also conducted research to illuminate the harmful effects experienced by those who migrate irregularly. The main outcome of the program was increased awareness amongst potential Bangladeshi migrants about safer migration options to the UK while curbing fraudulence in labour migration.

In this respect RMMRU has conducted research to identify professions where one can legally migrate. The organization has also carried out research on harmful effects experienced by those who migrate illegally. The main focus of the project was to inform potential Bangladeshi migrants about options available to safely migrate to the United Kingdom while also curbing fraudulence in labour migration.


Dramas were produced under the project addressing several issues: Promoting safe migration, discouraging irregular migration and illegal practices of travel agencies/ brokers/ recruiting agencies/ educational counselors, the reality abroad, informing students of the advantages and challenges they would possibly face studying abroad, the current situation of employment markets and migration (Business/ Work Visa) options, encouraging social adaptation of students and migrants who are going/living abroad, circumstances of Bangladeshis overstaying at the UK under tourist/ visit and its consequences, and addressing the issue of migration through “marriage” are the major thematic areas of concentration. Several dramas were produced in collaboration with a reputed media production house, with the dramas subsequently broadcast on the national TV channel and some private TV channels, too. You can read more about other RMMRU drama productions here!

Funded by: Regional Centre for Strategic Studies Center (RSC), Oxford University 

This program organized the first Regional Conference of Scholars and Other Professional Working on Refugee and Displacement Issues in Dhaka. As a follow up of the conference a higher education link was established in 1998 with the Refugee Studies Centre of the University of Oxford.Under the Link, the Unit conducted research studies on refugees, migrants, stateless persons such as Biharis in camps, internally displaced persons, trafficked in women and children, and other marginalized groups. Additional conferences and seminars were also organized in order to bring migration issues up for discussion at the regional level. Young Researchers’ Forum (YRF) was also a result of this program (above). Under the link, a full course on Refugees, Migrants and the Displaced was developed at Dhaka University. Finally, this program established exchange visits with scholars in migration discourse from Oxford and Dhaka University, thereby increasing the global migration network. 

Run time: 1996 – 2004

Funded by: UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)

This program was composed of short courses on International Refugee Law organized by YRF members. Additionally, studies on urban refugees, Rohingya refugees, Biharis were conducted. The UNHCR Handbook on Status Determination of Refugees was also translated to Bangla via this program. Moreover, RMMRU engaged in campaigns for the adoption of national law on refugees, accession to the 1951 Refugee Convention and ratification of the UN Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Their Families 1990. The program worked hard to bring citizenship and rehabilitation/reintegration of camp-based Biharis in Bangladesh to the policy agenda. When the Interim Government of 2001 sought to streamline the labour recruitment process, RMMRU was entrusted the task of preparing a policy document. Once the current government came to power, it established the new Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment. The new Ministry and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) assigned RMMRU to prepare a policy document for institutionalizing linkages with Bangladeshi Diaspora for economic development of the country. 

Run time: 2002 – 2004

Funded by:International Organization for Migration (IOM)

This program was designed to increase the knowledge and understanding of the complexity of human trafficking and to the capacity of local people to prevent trafficking. RMMRU partnered with Rights Jessore and Association for Community Development, Rajshahi to work on this program. The program took place in both Dhaka and Rajshahi. Both training and communication materials were utilized to increase awareness and prevention of the trafficking of women and children in Bangladesh. 

Run time: 2002 – 2004

Funded by:British Council

RMMRU implemented this training project to help grassroots NGOs to combat trafficking. Five local NGOs participated: Rights Jessore, ACD Rajshahi, MuktiNari, PalashiparaSamajKallyanSamity and Center for Communication and Development. The program built the capacity of these grassroots NGOs so that they could train local opinion leaders and organize anti-trafficking programs. Additionally, RMMRU monitored and evaluated their field level interventions. 

Run time: 2001 – 2002 

Funded by: Regional Centre for Strategic Studies Center (RSC), Oxford University 

Under this program, RMMRU developed a Training of Trainers (ToT) module for the community leaders with all relevant information on labour migration process. A set of flip charts and other supporting materials were also developed. Experts were invited to provide information on their respective areas of migration in the module development process. For example, bankers were approached to prepare the remittance chapter of the module. Likewise, BMET officials were asked to develop the section on processing migration. RMMRU used migrants’ associations as a source of information for the module and also as contacts to get trainees. This program was a branch of the higher education link.