Carmela Godeau

During the 30 years of experience as International Civil Servant, of which 25 with IOM, Mrs. Godeau has been exposed to different types of environment and areas of work from operations to management and administration, project development and implementation, emergency and post-conflict situations. She has assumed her duties as the Regional Director for Middle East and North Africa in July 2015.  Prior to this appointment, she has been Regional Director for West and central Africa, the Regional Programme Development Officer/Deputy Regional Representative in Rome Mission with Regional Functions and Chief of Mission in Syria.

Mrs. Godeau started her career with IOM in Cairo in 1994 as Chief of Mission and then as the Senior Operations and Development Officer/Deputy Regional Representative of the Cairo Mission with Regional Functions. Her career in the UN system started in the Occupied Palestinian Territories as Refugee Affairs Officer in 1989.

Her life as a migrant started in the Middle East and North Africa region, when she was a student in oriental languages, a step that had allowed Mrs. Godeau to travel and work in Egypt, Palestinian occupied territories, Israel, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan... Her journey around the Mediterranean continued, where she was in charge of programming in the Maghreb countries, and has extensively travelled through Algeria, Libya, Morocco and Tunisia providing policy and technical advice on developments, trends and issues affecting the Maghreb in relation to migration, contributing to the formulation of regional policies and programme decisions.

Following the migratory routes backwards she then found herself in West and Central Africa. In the last decades IOM has invested a lot in the continent as the large African membership demonstrates. However, much more needs to be done to tap into the enormous potentials of the African countries positioning them to respond to the outstanding challenges of attaining the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.

Finally upon her return to the Middle East and the North Africa region Mrs. Godeau has closed the loop of the migration journey of her professional life at a time of historic developments with the consultations and ultimately the adoption of the Global Compact for Migration.

Noting the importance and relevance of migration for the MENA region, Mrs. Godeau trusts that effective migration governance is a key success factor for the achievement of the SDGs which can only be achieved if migration and migrants are considered.