About the Author: Bryan Schaaf serve as a program officer in the Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (PRM). He is currently coordinating PRM’s assistance to international organizations and NGOs in Dadaab, Kenya.
Due to conflict and famine, over 235,000 refugees fled Somalia from January to June of this year alone. Over half have come to Kenya’s Dadaab refugee camp, which was already the largest in the world, situated in the arid northeast, about 80 kilometers from the Somali border.
There are now almost 500,000 refugees in Kenya — that’s more than the total population of Cleveland, Ohio. While the majority of refugees in Kenya are Somali, Congolese, Sudanese, Eritrean, or Ethiopian, others are also represented. While not a rich country, Kenya has generously hosted hundreds of thousands of refugees for many years — including some families that have been in Dadaab for three generations. For this, the Kenyan government is to be commended.
Kenya recently demonstrated leadership in providing humanitarian assistance by allowing the Office of the UN High Commissioner… more »