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Cory Rodgers writes on Kenya’s black market in refugee shelters, promoting self-reliance but also fomenting disputes and corruption

This week Cory Rodgers (DPhil candidate and research consultant on the Humanitarian Innovation Project) writes for IRIN News about the informal system of shelter ownership that has sprung up in refugee camps in Kenya and elsewhere. This unregulated system has allowed entrepreneurial activity to flourish, but also leaves some refugees vulnerable to losing everything.

The article details the story of Daniel and his wife, who lost their home and business in one of the Kakuma refugee camps in northwestern Kenya, and now face starting again “from zero. Maybe less than zero.”

As Rodgers writes, “The informal system makes it possible for industrious camp residents to make a living, and the income from shelter and business sales can make it easier for refugees to fund repatriation or ease the transition to resettlement countries. But the black market in refugee real estate also foments disputes and corruption.”

The article also includes comment from Jeff Crisp (RSC Research Associate and Associate Fellow at Chatham House).

Read the article here >>

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