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Toolkit for teaching young people about Migration and Asylum in the European Union

"Not Just Numbers" is a toolkit about migration and asylum in the European Union produced by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

As European societies become more multi-cultural, the need to raise awareness and promote understanding of the many reasons for which people choose or are forced to leave their own countries grows.

The toolkit provides young people with the opportunity to understand that behind each anonymous statistic related to migration and asylum there is a human face and a personal story. In doing so it also addresses issues related to discrimination and xenophobia.

The toolkit includes:

Teacher's Manual

  • An introduction to migration and asylum for teachers.
  • Classroom activities and lesson ideas, including exercises linked to the DVD.


  • Portraits of migrants and refugees.
  • Clips and footage on the issues of trafficking and smuggling and migration and asylum in the media room activities.

Downloads in 20 languages:

  • Please follow the links opposite to preview the toolkit in your language.
  • To download and use the complete toolkit (DVD and teacher's manual) please register first.

Media Exercise

A 2 minute video without commentary showing the arrival of migrants and refugees by boat.

"Not Just Numbers" photo exercise

(Ages 12-14)

In this exercise, pupils are invited to use the set of photos provided, and their imagination, to tell a story about migrants, asylum seekers or refugees.

Specific Objectives

  • To be able to correctly apply the terms learnt relating to migration and asylum.
  • To demonstrate an understanding of the situation of migrants, refugees and asylum seekers by imagining themselves in similar situations.
  • To show critical thinking about racial, sexual or ethnic stereotypes and assumptions.




Video portraits of migrants and refugees

1 - Réan (refugee)
2 - Adelina (refugee)
3 - Doré (young migrant)
4 - Tino (post WWII migrant worker)
5 - Alfredo and Veronica (highly skilled
migrant workers)


IOM and UNHCR value your feedback. Please complete the attached evaluation form.

Toolkit evaluation form