A Transit center is a reception facility, where migrants who opted for AVRR programs are hosted while their return travel is organized. Transit centers are open, meaning that accommodation there is voluntary and migrants can leave at any time. The main condition for accommodation in the centers is a willingness to voluntarily return home. All migrants arriving at the centre are registred, profiled and briefed by IOM staff.In the center, migrants are provided with basic assistance such as food, shelter and medicine; in addition, migrants with specific needs are identified for further assistance. The stay in the centers is generally short (1-2 weeks), allowing for migrants to finalize their return plans, contact their family and ensure the existence of travel documents and tickets for transportation back home.
In Niger IOM has five open-type transit centres for migrants, one in Arlit (300 places), one in Dirkou (150 places), one in Agadez (1,000 places) and two in Niamey (for a total of 200 places), one of them accommodating unaccompanied minors and vulnerable women, some of whom are victims of trafficking.
In 2016, IOM registered and assisted close to 15,000 migrants in its centers (including Nigeriens and third-country nationals). In 2017, IOM welcomed and assisted 7,594 migrants.
In addition, the Agadez Transit Center also offered short proffesional training for migrants willing to acquire skills before returning home. The local population is also associated with these training courses in order to provide an equal opportunity for alternatives to migration as an income generating activity. A first training course on the construction of bricks, using simple equipment and recycled materials, began in March 2016 and the second training on the creation of jewelry in May. More than 600 beneficiaries had been trained in total at the end of December 2016.