The global refugee population is becoming increasingly urbanized with more than half of all refugees living in urban areas. In South Africa, in lieu of its uniqueness urban refugee policy of “non-encampment”, it is imperative that detailed and comparative research is conducted on a national scale. For this reason, the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) in South Africa, commissioned the University of the Western Cape, in partnership with the Scalabrini Institute for Human Mobility in Africa (SIHMA), a study to assist UNHCR and its partners to better understand the nature of refugee-led community organizations, especially their organization, reach, leadership and the extent to which they are representative of the constituencies they serve. This information will assist UNHCR to design better two-way communication mechanisms with refugee communities and strengthen protection partnerships for refugees and asylum seekers. Furthermore, this research will contribute to existing refugee integration literature and further our general understanding of the realities faced by refugees who are attempting to rebuild their lives in new urban contexts.
- To present, discuss and validate the draft report: Refugee and Asylum Seeking Representative Structures and their Communities in South Africa
- To review and provide input on the draft’s recommendations and examine their practicality
- To facilitate exchange of experience and knowledge amongst stakeholders and UNHCR’s partners