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Somali Youth display their stories for World Refugee Day

Somali Youth display their stories for World Refugee Day

Published: June 23, 2010
youth work on creative projects

Somalia refugee youth work on AFSC-sponsored creative projects at Dadaab Refugee Camp in northeast Kenya.

Photo: AFSC / AFSC-Somalia

During the commemoration of the World Refuge Day, some Somali and Ethiopian youth were sponsored by AFSC to exhibit pieces of their photography, creative projects and cultural dances in Nairobi. The groups travelled long distances from Daadab refugee camp and from the Ogaden region of Ethiopia to share in Kenya’s capital, a regional hub.

A few months before the young Somalis were equipped with cameras and photography lessons and asked to document their personal stories. The moving photos, videos and stories depicted the graphic plight of the refugees, their quest for sustainable peace, and the visions of the photographers’ futures. AFSC felt it was important to help these stories be shared more widely.

As people around the globe commemorate World Refugee Day, AFSC Somalia Program focuses on Somali refugees living in Daadab camp in Kenya. The close to 300,00 refugees, of whom 60% are youth, fled across the border looking for a better place, but still they find themselves crowded in a camp designed for one third its current number.

As the theme of the World Refugee Day “THEY TOOK MY HOME BUT THEY CAN’T TAKE MY FUTURE” suggests, even in those trying moments humans have the capabilities to see the rays of hope. AFSC believes that Somali men, women and youth can claim, secure and hold spaces to find peaceful solutions to violence and insecurity and contribute to building peaceful and safe communities in Somalia and the Horn of Africa.