Kakuma News Reflector – A Refugee Free Press

Opportunity for Resettlement and Higher Education in Canada

Posted in Education, Humanitarian Services, News Updates by KANERE on November 8, 2010

On August 17th and 23rd twenty-eight refugees departed Kakuma for Canada, where they will pursue higher-education and a new life outside the refugee camp.

This August, 28 refugees departed from Kakuma Refugee Camp to head to Canada. A year ago, these individuals were selected for the World University Service of Canada’s (WUSC) Student Refugee Program (SRP), a great opportunity for studies abroad.

The WUCS program began in 1978, and since then has assisted thousands of refugee students to resettle in Canada and pursue a university education. According to the WUSC website, the program has welcomed refugees originating from countries such as Afghanistan, Burma, Burundi, Comoros Islands, DRC, Ethiopia, Eretria, Ghana, Guatemala, Iran, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Togo, Uganda, Zaire, and Zimbabwe. This program is unique in that students not only receive an opportunity for resettlement but are also granted scholarships for fully-paid higher education.

WUSC also includes refugee students from urban areas of Nairobi where they join classes together with students at Kakuma Camp. Eligible students undergo three major steps of learning, namely research, the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOFEL), and computer basic studies. In Kakuma Camp, the university selection process is overseen by local NGO Windle Trust Kenya (WKT). A WTK official who spoke with KANERE explained, “University selection is outside our mandate. So after TOEFL, the placement would be done by WUSC, who also facilitates this process entirely when they apply to a respective university for a particular student’s case.”

Through conversations with WTK staff in Kakuma and the WUSC website, KANERE found that WUSC is a student-founded program established by students in Canadian universities to offer assistance for refugees all over the world. It is partially supported by dedicated contributions by Canadian students. Faculty and volunteers from universities and colleges in Canada contribute financial support to enhance the living situation for sponsored students during their first year in Canada. The program is small compared to the global need, because there are so many capable students and the request for opportunities is always enormous.

This is an incredible opportunity for refugees who are selected, but there are always challenges in terms of adapting to the culture and the new environment. The students never forget their refugee background, and sometimes there is pressure from family and friends who are left behind in the camps and the countries of origin. As G. Deng, a 2010 WUSC student states, “Personally, WUSC has brought back positivity in life. I used to see the world through a negative lens because of what I had gone through, I could not see any bright future for me. But today, all is changed as I will be resettled and join the University. The fact is that I will miss my family, with whom I am parting and not knowing when to get reunified again in our life time.”

According to information obtained in the WTK field office at Kakuma, every year some refugees are rewarded with this unique scholarship to Canada. The number of student applicants is large, and only the few who are able to meet the required criterion will be given a scholarship opportunity. In the year 2009, 30 students from Kakuma went to Canada. There were 28 students in 2010, and 30 are scheduled to leave in 2011. “This progam is student-managed, as the members and sponsors are also students from Canadian Universities. In Kakuma it runs from August to August and this year we have 30 applicants on board,” said an official at WTK in an interview with a KANERE journalist.

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23 Responses

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  1. idris abdala bakari said, on April 5, 2011 at 3:19 am

    i am refuge from somalia came 1992 and i lived in kakuma refugee camp with out any support from here at kakuma and always ask why? my registration numbers is availble if any one wish to inquire more especialy from unhcr!

    I am Idris

  2. mohamed said, on August 21, 2011 at 3:17 am

    I would like to get education in canada, i have tried many times through the scholarships in the camp which is controlled by Unhcr, windle trust and lwf. why should the scholarship providers come to camp and select refugees and needy people by themselves, that can be a better means….

  3. Anya charles said, on November 25, 2011 at 2:22 am

    Iwould like to request you to suport me from my mission of spreading the Gospel of GOD to the hungry and tasty in hearts.

  4. Osman Juma Adam said, on March 25, 2012 at 12:36 pm

    I am a refugee from darfur .i live Kassala town ,eastern Sudan many threats facing me ,now adays I need everybody to rescue me as fast as he can . so when i found this address from one of my relatives immediatly i decided to write for you to rescue me first and to apply for this unique opportunity as a sort of fast solution for my horrible conditions .
    please contact me through my e-mail for more details .

    thank you
    osman juma Adam
    kassala/ Sudan

  5. Birhanu said, on July 29, 2012 at 9:18 pm

    I am Ethiopian.when I was in Ethiopia ,I am a University student .fuculty of bussenes and Economics .in my life i give great value for education.but know when i live hear my mind is start to depretiate.then i live for education.long live for UNHCR.

  6. Birhanu said, on July 29, 2012 at 9:48 pm

    I am Ethiopian.i need education .i give great value for education in my life.also i am a university student when i was in my country. next to God i live for education.

  7. Hibo Abdikadir said, on September 9, 2012 at 3:25 am

    we thank all some organisations dat do help our students in kakuma. We rly appreciate 4 taking us 4 further studies. May God bles us ol. As we wait 4 ur da resetlment including myself? It would also be good to have the procedure of contacting service providers?

  8. Birhanu said, on September 16, 2012 at 8:33 pm

    Tnx to my God know i am student of Bible college. my dream become true one day b/c God is with me.some times when i think about Education i will become crezy,but when i think about heaven and i am for a time bing on these world or these world is not my home _wow become energeitic.ONE DAY+

  9. Kasi bisimwa said, on October 20, 2012 at 8:33 am

    This scholarship is also fortunate to me; I applied in 2012 for the same but the admission still.

  10. Kasi bisimwa said, on October 20, 2012 at 9:06 am

    Wow! How God can pass through wtk/wusc to exauss my pray and hobby. The verification of my document still from Drc via UNchr. I hope God necessary do.

  11. samuel mucyo said, on October 25, 2012 at 4:26 am

    It is amazing grace!!, may God bless WUSC, am a Congolese refugee here in Kenya, for so long time abandoned my studies, i need your help it will b like dream, so i have all the UNHCR docs and all the requirements, so good people tell me what to do.

  12. Birhanu said, on November 7, 2012 at 8:49 am

    Thanks to God but not to UNHCR. We pray to God but not UNHCR because there are perpetrators in many soat of camp problems. I hope a chance could come from above to set me free and i pray to Allah not to UNHCR.

    Having faith and keeping prayers alive!

  13. cedrick bizala said, on April 22, 2013 at 1:41 am

    Hi I am actually a refugee in Zimbabwe tongogara camp, i am very glad to see that they can be opportunities like this for refugees specially about school, so my question is on how to apply and what are the requirement that the university or organisation is requiring? thank You and you can notify me when there is no answer about my question!

    Thank you!

  14. Birhanu said, on April 22, 2013 at 1:31 pm

    I applied it but i don’t know if there was a corruption or what is going on with it. please education is the same as AIR but for refugee in kakuma.., I am so so sorry.

  15. Birhanu said, on April 22, 2013 at 1:33 pm

    I am so so sorry

  16. mohamed yussuf said, on June 1, 2013 at 3:10 am

    Hi, I am mohamed yussuf hassan currently in kakuma refugee camp with out getting any opportunities from any where. Therefore the agency in charge of scholarship is good that they visit kakuma to provide this opportunity. BUT we want the selection to done by themselves and NOT WTK, UNHCR or LWF..? Hope this is noted!!

  17. Ismaili Maya Amri said, on January 15, 2014 at 1:00 am

    Re: APPLICATION FOR SCHOLARSHIP. I am here by submitting for reason to try for a chance! I am Congolese, Male age 22 who also Single parent and a Muslim by religion. I am registered with UNCHR under ration card number 1741109. I am really interested to pursue my further studies but I do not have high school document and I am want to continue with my studies at any time in the future. I fled my country and i was not able to carry all my documents!
    Thanks in advance for any chance from you. My phone is +254716220683.

  18. Abdirizak said, on January 31, 2014 at 3:43 am

    Hi. I have seen that you helped refugees to go higher education. I am urban refugee in Nairobi, Kenya. I have a unhcr mandate and Kenyan Alien ID, therefore, i needed to go back to school and study at a university because i lost many opportunities in my life when i fled violence in my country. Will you help me?

  19. Safari henry said, on June 9, 2014 at 10:15 pm

    As if this is only done to refugees of kakuma and other camp! I have never seen any student from ugandan camps especially kyangwali refugees camp given ascholorship to canada yet they too performs best in their examinations and also have same elligibility of being refugees with related documents! Why? They are only given scholorships @home universities which discourages their opportunity of being creativeness

  20. solomonasres said, on August 9, 2014 at 7:13 am

    I like the article. its nice idea!

  21. abdifatah ibrahim gulled said, on September 3, 2014 at 9:20 am

    I am Abdifatah Ibrahim a Somali refugee in Uganda since 1991. I am now 28 years without any durable solution. I need your support. Thanks a lot!

  22. tsegay asmerom habte said, on November 2, 2015 at 1:02 am

    I am Eritrean. Due to the poletical issues am now in Ethiopia refugee camp. I would wish to continue my study if there’s any opportunity! I have lived here for over 5 years in the dark. Please help me to join? Thank you

  23. Augustin kwibe said, on February 20, 2017 at 5:28 am

    Augustin kwibe, I’m a refugee from DR congo living in Zimbabwe refugee camp of tongogara, I arrived here since 2005 up to now I’m still living in the camp. But I still believe door will be open for me one day and start a new life in one of overseas countries with school and job opportunities. I also give thanks to UNHCR for their supporting in all refugees in Zimbabwe and around the world


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