Refugee Stories

What is it like to be a child refugee? Edith, a former child refugee shares her story. In 1994, at the age of three, I was forced to flee my home in Rwanda to escape the Rwandan genocide. I still remember running in the forest as a little girl… Read More
In 2013, Esther* and her ten children were forced to flee their home country of Congo after her husband, a human rights activist, was abducted, and the rest of the family was brutally attacked. In Nairobi, Esther and her children lived with a friend in a one-room home and were… Read More
As an integral part of RefugePoint’s program in Nairobi, the counseling team helps to stabilize and empower refugee clients to achieve self-reliance by enhancing their support systems and by strengthening their social networks through individual and group therapy sessions. Group therapy sessions allow members to express themselves in a safe… Read More
Many refugees emphasize to us their desire to be self-reliant, and request support to get back to their independent lives in their new homes. Henri* is one such client. Henri completed business training and received a small start-up grant of $200 USD. Henri decided to start a business that none… Read More
Joseph & Beatrice
“Let me tell you about when I started selling milk. When I started out I would sell only one crate of milk, which would only give me 18 shillings (about 18 cents). I did this everyday and it was discouraging because I had so many children to take care of,… Read More
Zakuani & Nyantabara
Hitching rides on long-distance trucks, and walking for many miles during the day, our client Zakuani* and his wife Nyantabara*, fled from Congo and arrived to Nairobi, Kenya in December 2014. Zakuani and his family fled Congo due to war waged by MaiMai militia after he witnessed the merciless killing… Read More
David & Family
In 2002, after suffering severe torture and violence at the hands of rebels, David* and his family fled the Congo and vowed never to return. After a harrowing journey through Rwanda and Uganda, the family arrived in Nairobi. Initially, life in Nairobi was better for David and his family, but… Read More
Monica*, a single mother of seven, arrived in Kenya as a refugee after fleeing Congo in November 2014. Monica was separated from her husband during the family’s flight and had to begin supporting her family financially. With two of her children experiencing serious medical conditions, Monica’s family slept hungry most… Read More
“My name is Yadasa, and I am a former refugee who was resettled to Australia through RefugePoint. I am from the Ethiopian Oromo community, and I left Ethiopia after facing a lot of political persecution. In 2001, when I fled to Nairobi, Kenya, I was a young university student. In… Read More
Rose is a refugee from the Congo who has lived in Nairobi, with her three children, for two-and-a-half years. “Initially, my life was quite difficult. I would wake up in the morning, and I did not know where I would get a single cent for the day, or how to… Read More
Bien is a 30-year-old Congolese man who, fearing for his life in the midst of heavy fighting in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), fled his home country and arrived to Nairobi, Kenya in March 2009. Beginning a new life in the city, without resources or connections was not easy… Read More
David* leads the RefugePoint Livelihoods team across a hallway in his building to a very small, unlit, and windowless room, filled with cooking smoke. “Before I met RefugePoint, I was here in this single room, with my family of eight – my six children and my wife and I were… Read More
When I first came to Kenya I was so withdrawn, I didn’t speak, I had no thoughts of the future. Now I am able to think about the future. Since coming to RefugePoint, that has been the biggest change for me. – Belvie,* RefugePoint client Pictured here, a family… Read More
To her neighbors in Nairobi, Annalie, a mother of three, is a successful and skilled tailor. However, few know about her struggles as a refugee. During the 1994 Rwandan genocide, Annalie and her husband fled to Kenya, where they experienced extreme hardship. “We experienced dire poverty in Kenya – the… Read More
Mercy* received a Livelihoods business grant, which helped her repair a broken grinding machine for use in her peanut butter business. Through this business, Mercy has managed to send her children to school and can afford housing and food. Mercy also attended RefugePoint’s group counseling sessions for women, which she… Read More
The truck driver covered us with goods so we could pass through the border undetected. We have not seen or heard from our parents or siblings since. – Irene, age 14 At age 14, as Irene* cared for several family members in her village in eastern Democratic Republic of… Read More
Joy is a Congolese refugee and former RefugePoint client who was resettled to the U.S. in July 2016. When she became involved in the women’s movement in her country, Joy and her family were persecuted and Joy was violently attacked. After fleeing to Kenya with her daughter, Praise, RefugePoint assisted… Read More
Musa*, age 11, was among the last unaccompanied minors to arrive in the U.S. before the suspension of the U.S. refugee resettlement program, and was certainly one of the last to arrive from such a life-threatening situation. At age 8, Musa was chased from his home in the Democratic Republic… Read More
In her home country of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Julie* was a successful farmer and her future was bright. Like many young women her age, Julie longed for marriage and a family of her own. All of that drastically changed on the day that the Mai Mai brutally attacked… Read More
Abal*, a 32-year old refugee, lived in Kenya for four years. Abal’s elder brother was an active member of an opposition group in their country (which we will not name due to ongoing sensitivity). His family was constantly harassed and his father died after being detained. Abal himself was accused… Read More