‘Return to the village’ to help reverse rural-urban migration

TEHRAN – The Barekat Charity Foundation, affiliated with the Headquarters for the Execution of the Order of Imam, will launch a plan to generate 15,000 jobs in villages, aimed at helping reverse the trend of rural exodus.

Called “Return to the Village,” the plan offers special facilities to villagers who have migrated to cities and helps them earn a living by returning to their place of birth.

Many people from rural areas migrate to cities because of unemployment and the hope of building a better future, said Seyed Amir Hossein Madani, director general of the Barakat Foundation.

With the implementation of this plan, it is expected to create 5,000 jobs this year, and if we manage to create 15,000 jobs, 60,000 people, with an average of 4 members per family, will return to the village from urban areas to rural areas, he added, ISNA reported on Friday.

The Barakat Foundation has various activities, but the main activity is in the area of ​​job creation and production, he said, adding: “Investments have been made in nearly 800 enterprises and units of production, large and small, which has led to the creation of more than 200,000 jobs over the past 14 years.

According to Madani, this project has been implemented in 621 regions of the country and 297 cities, and 8,035 villages have been covered so far.

This year, a total budget of 135 trillion rials (nearly 3.2 billion dollars at the official rate of 42,000 rials) will be allocated to job creation with the participation of banks and individuals, he said. he concludes.

Downward trend in rural-to-urban migration

Currently, 26 percent of the country’s population lives in villages, around 39,000 villages have more than 20 households, and 23,000 villages have less than 20 households.

For example, over 97 percent of the country’s rural population lives in villages with more than 20,000 households.

Many efforts have been made over the past two years by the government to support the villagers and slow the trend of migration from rural areas to cities.

Rural tourism, agrotourism, religious tourism and ecotourism are alternatives or complementary economic activities that could further stimulate rural development while decreasing the dependence of rural communities on a main economic sector ( agriculture, forestry, energy or mining).

Mohammad Omid, vice president of rural development, said in November 2020 that for the first time in the country, the migration of people from rural areas to cities has reached zero.

A total of 220 trillion rials (nearly $ 5.6 billion) has been approved for village development in the current year (March 2020-March 2021), Omid said.

Some 140 trillion rials (about $ 3.3 billion) has been spent so far, he noted, adding that the unemployment rate in rural areas has reached 7.4%, which has decreased by more than one percent compared to last year.


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