Getting by on the Margins: Sudanese and Somali Refugees: A Case Report of Refugees in Towns Cairo, Egypt

Miranda, P.
Publication language
Date published
01 Jun 2018
Research, reports and studies
Forced displacement and migration, Host Communities, Urban
Sudan, Somalia, Egypt
Tufts University

At the end of 2017, Egypt was host to more than 232,000 refugees, most of them in the Greater Cairo area. This report shares the experiences of Cairo's largely overlooked sub-Saharan African refugees, as well as their impact on the neighborhoods where they live. With few meaningful opportunities for local integration, minimal assistance from the international community, and no path to citizenship, integration prospects for sub-Saharan African refugees in Cairo are dim. Yet, despite enduring high levels of racist and xenophobic harassment, abuse, and violence, Cairo’s refugees make the most out of a difficult situation and persevere to develop and sustain their communities.

The report draws on the author’s experience as a case worker for refugees in Cairo from 2012 – 2017. It benefits from the viewpoints of two research assistants who are themselves sub-Saharan African refugees living in Cairo. While it is difficult to be hopeful about refugees’ prospects for integration in Cairo, it is inspiring to see how they have created their own lives and communities in the great city.