World Refugee Day June 2009
Volume 1, Issue 5-6 / May-June 2009
Kanere Welcomes 2009 World Refugee Day Theme: Real People Real Need
The 20th June 2009 world refugee day celebrations kakuma refugee camp was an eventful day compared to the past years.
Unlike the past years celebrations were organized by the NGOs. The entertainment teams from the refugee communities were and did not fail to impress despite the day being hot and the sun burning to the core. They were later served with soft drinks and biscuits.
20th June 2009 portrayed an image of equality between refugees and Agency staff.
Hundreds of refugees and their community leaders attended the celebrations but their expectations were not met, “we hoped that food ration will be increased and much efforts to assist refugees to become self reliant , resettlement and insecurity concerns were not satisfactorily yet our humanity compromised”, an equatorial Sudanese refugee told kanere.
Refugees in this camp, many of whom have stayed longer in the camp have experiences in agencies speeches. They say that it has been a tradition to speak about rights of refugee either in the refugee camp or in the media but little is realized. Refugees want words to be replaced by actions when they speak about refugees as real people with real needs, much emphasis is placed in the actual refugee situation as opposed to refugees real sufferings. however the agencies staffs who speak on their behalf do not feel it exactly.
Kanere expresses the sufferings of real people with real needs, among the people who have spoken to kanere some refugees had their comments. “One of the kanere publication I read of February with great insight . “It is the real voice of refugees in kakuma, I hope that it can bring changes in the camp in the near future,” a Somali refugee said.
Refugees hope to voice their opinions through their single trusted free press kanere.
However, the survival of any refugee here in the camp depends entirely on donations. Since its inception, voluntary kanere refugee journalists have been reporting in the camp.
On this great day, government and other persons concerned with refugee affairs celebrate the day. Refugees express their different concerns through songs, cultural dances and poems like the Heads of the Agencies who expressed their concern that they will going to support the refugees with protection, shelter, food, education repatriation and security . “I thank international community and all donors whose hearts are touched by this living situations and gave their money for refugees not to die.” Said an Ethiopia-Oromo old man on the ground.
Refugees are warehoused in the camp and every two weeks they go for their food ration distribution. “I don’t celebrate the 20th June because our daily life in the camp reminds me of my status that I have in the camp and I don’t see much reasons as to why I live.” Rwandan refugee student said.
The day should remind people on power in every nation to think about the causes of becoming refugees and then allow democratic governance to take place in their countries When this is done refugees will repatriate voluntary in their full dignity as human beings.
Kakuma refugee camp celebrate the day while it continues to host about 40,000 thousand refugees from nine different nationalities of east –central, southern and horn of Africa.