This report assesses the impact on children of being returned from Europe to Afghanistan. Through interviews with individual children, their parents or guardians, and with governmental and non-governmental actors, it builds a picture of children’s material, physical, legal and psychosocial safety during the returns process. Returns processes implemented by EU member states and Norway are examined to analyse where European governments are failing to provide appropriate support.
The Global Initiative on Out-of-School-Children led by UNICEF and UNESCO aims to understand the situation of out-of-school children in each country studied, including the barriers to education faced and gaps in current approaches to addressing them. Samuel Hall has prepared this Afghanistan Country study with the Afghanistan Ministry of Education and UNICEF in order to provide recommendations to key stakeholders on how to address this significant – the report finds that an estimated 3.7 million children aged 7-17 are out-of-school in Afghanistan – challenge.
Commissioned by The Regional Durable Solutions Secretariat (ReDSS), and Conducted by Samuel Hall, this report provides recommendations on how to improve local integration and self-reliance programming. The study assessed the level of local integration in Gambela (Gambela city and Pugnido Camp) and Somali regions (Jigjiga and Kebribeyah Camp) for refugees who have lived in Ethiopia for 20 years or more by comparing their situation to the host communities, as per Pledge 6 commitment.
This report – based on research from Samuel Hall and commissioned by the Norwegian Refugee Council and the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre – follows on from a 2012 study of displacement patterns and the challenges inherent in protecting internally displaced people (IDPs) in Afghanistan. This new and updated analysis focuses on assessing the causes of prolonged and multiple displacement and seeks to present the key protection challenges still confronting displacement-affected Afghans today. Combining the voices of IDPs with analysis of primary data collected from IDPs and secondarily displaced returning refugees across Afghanistan, the study reveals major gaps in access to key humanitarian services as well as a set of persistent and entrenched vulnerabilities that blight the lives of IDPs.
The data presented in this case study is drawn from 2017 research on IDPs’ protection needs carried out by Samuel Hall for the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC). A large quantitative survey was conducted in Herat, Kabul, Kandahar, Kunduz and Nangarhar provinces, where data was collected in rural, peri-urban and urban areas. Of 2,580 respondents, 1,161 were returnee-IDPs and 1,420 other IDPs. The sample data is neither representative nor random, but combined with focus group discussions with displaced people and other community members, the research captures their narratives, protection needs and experiences.
Every province of Afghanistan is required by law to have a Juvenile Rehabilitation Centre (JRC) in its
capital city to house and rehabilitate children in conflict with the law sentenced to detention. An alternative to full detention is the Open JRC, where children spend daytime in rehabilitation and evenings and weekends at home. The Open JRC in Kabul nevertheless remains a detention facility.
This research offers a pragmatic view of the lived experiences of children in the Kabul Juvenile Rehabilitation Centre (JRC) and situates detention within their life events, where neglected needs and incurred stresses impact their later adult lives and life opportunities. While strides have been made to improve this situation, the Kabul JRC is still short on consistent and quality rehabilitation programmes and reintegration support in line with national and international standards. Existing initiatives generally lack specifically trained staff, resources, management, and facilities.
This study employed child-sensitive qualitative and quantitative methods, surveying the majority of boys detained in Open and Closed Centres of the JRC (112) and triangulating and adding depth to findings with focus group discussions (2), case studies (4), and key informant interviews (15). The results underlined the diversity of backgrounds, ages and crimes amongst the boys. Furthermore, the results highlighted the many similarities shared between children inside and outside the JRC – calling for integrated approaches for existing and planned services.
Conflict, disasters, and other humanitarian emergencies have broad reaching consequences, but often lost in emergency responses are the psychosocial impacts of these events. Yet such crises can have a detrimental effect on psychosocial wellness, as demonstrated by Samuel Hall research with urban youth in Kabul. 71 per cent of youth interviewed by Samuel Hall had experienced a traumatic event, with many reporting symptoms associated with trauma. Our data shows that the mental health of these youth should absolutely be considered a priority – the time for action is now.
The purpose of this research is to inform future work in supporting displacement-affected persons to access civil documentation as well as accessing other rights and services connected to it. This will in turn contribute to enabling persons affected by displacement to achieve durable solutions – whether local integration, return or settlement in another part of Afghanistan.
Returns to (post-)conflict and fragile settings, from Afghanistan to Somalia, are increasing. The literature is clear on the return challenges to such contexts, and the diverse array of expectations of (re-)integration that differ depending on age, gender, timing and duration of exile, and conditions in exile. What this report measures is therefore not the impact of a program, as the overall context includes this complex backdrop of hopes and dreams, caught by reality and ultimately, by unplanned outcomes. Assisted voluntary return and reintegration (AVRR) programmes are a compromise that returnees turn to, and agree to, when other recourses have not been successful. This is where this programme intervenes: assisting returns when returns become, by circumstances, the most realistic option for migrants, and one that should be handled with sufficient care, protection and dignity for those who return. There are responsibilities to be upheld, by states and by organisations mandated to assist returns.
This study was commissioned by NRC Ethiopia to document lessons learned as well as to provide a strategic framework to inform NRC’s positioning on integrated programming. It examines the role of NRC in the provision of refugee livelihoods and education. The objectives were to: (a) identify key strengths, weaknesses and opportunities to bring together programming opportunities in relation to education, livelihoods, resilience and migration and (b) build a strategic framework, utilising Samuel Hall’s expertise in implementation research, for NRC to position itself in terms of scalable programs on refugee livelihoods, taking into consideration donor interests/strategies and potential programme synergies. A participatory research framework was designed, employing qualitative research methods in Addis, Shire and Dollo Ado. Focus group discussions (9 FGDs with 63 respondents), key informant interviews (30) and in-depth case studies (5) were gathered in a manner to reflect the voices of people engaged at different levels and in different phases of NRC’s implementation.
The site of one of the most protracted refugee situations in the world, Kakuma refugee camp is home to over 177 thousand refugees from various countries such as South Sudan, Somalia and Ethiopia.
Connected by the ancient Silk Road, the remote border region between Afghanistan (Badakhshan) and Tajikistan (GBAO) was once a place of prosperous exchange. Today the communities living on “the roof of the world” face a number of challenges common across the border: security concerns, poverty and lack of employment opportunities.
Non-governmental organisations (NGOs) from Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan gathered in November 2015 in Tehran for a regional meeting on Afghan refugee issues with a thematic focus on Afghan displaced youth. At a time when displacement in and out of Afghanistan continues to rise, when the number of Afghan asylum seekers grows steadily in Europe and debates on durable solutions for Afghan refugees remain, it is all the more necessary to take stock of the profiles of the millions of Afghan youth outside of their homeland, and those who made, with their families, the decision to return. The outcome of this workshop is concrete and operational: a set of possible key objectives and indicators that can help guide NGOs in their work with Afghan refugee youth, as well as facilitate improved donor and host government understanding of key issues. The centrality of better data was voiced by all NGOs present, a priority need in Iran and Pakistan, as well as upon return to Afghanistan, to enable tailored programming that support youth’s potential and are aligned with their aspirations.
Although cash-based interventions (CBIs) are increasingly used to deliver humanitarian assistance in support of more traditional in-kind emergency distributions, there is now a growing, global acceptance among stakeholders of the need to pay closer attention to the positive and negative impact of CBIs on key protection components. Although there have been several key contributions on this issues in recent years, including studies conducted by Samuel Hall, more research needs to be carried out in Afghanistan on the secondary effects of CBIs on protection issues for IDPs, which are often not systematically considered during the inception phase of project designs, nor as part of wider assistance program strategies. Samuel Hall has been commissioned by the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) to identify the effects and impact of cash-based programming on protection outcomes in Afghanistan, particularly in relation to ‘Do No Harm’ and minimising risks in terms of protection. This builds on Protection Outcomes In Cash Based Interventions: A Literature Review produced by DRC in January 2015 and which draws a number of conclusions on the impacts of CBIs on protection issues and recommends areas of further research.
This scoping study has been commissioned by UNHCR to inform the future regional education strategy for Somali refugees to be developed in 2015. The assumptions behind this study are simple. First, the situation of Somali refugees and displaced in East Africa in 2015 present major political, social, and economic risks for refugees, host countries, and the Horn of Africa, while compromising Somalia’s capacity to progressively rebuild its future. Secondly, in 2015, there is not only a necessity but also an opportunity to work towards solutions addressing the immediate and longer term protection needs of Somali refugees; thirdly, these solutions require a regional and coordinated approach between Somalia, host communities and their natural partners – including UNHCR; last but not least, education of Somali refugees can trigger such a crucial change for the future of Somalia and the Horn of Africa.
This research is the first comprehensive study of Somaliland and Puntland’s youth migration and its linkages to employment. The research maps economic drivers of migration, youth livelihood opportunities, and interventions to support youth and local markets – unlocking solutions for youth employment in Somaliland and Puntland inclusive of the public and private sectors.
The focus of the study is on the decision-making process behind refugee returnees’ and IDPs’ choices of destination. More specifically this research identifies factors that influence whether a returnee/IDP individual, family or community chooses to move to an urban or a rural location. The study presents a nuanced analysis of the combination, and interaction, of the different influences and variables affecting migration decisions to urban or rural areas (including areas of origin). The secondary focus of the study is on the livelihoods situation of displaced populations. Finally, the study provides a policy dimension to inform future programming for returnees and IDPs – crucial at a time of significant policy developments in Afghanistan, including the launch of the National IDP Policy. The study concludes with a section on policy recommendations for future action.
UNICEF is considering the development of a social protection programme with a specific focus on children, within the already existing framework developed by the World Bank and MoLSAMD. With the end goal of articulating children-sensitive programming with the World Bank’s own safety net programme in mind, the first step in this direction is for the organisation to launch a pilot programme in Balkh to test the best modalities of programming to cover children’s needs for social protection in the country. In the longer run, both organisations aim at increasing the scale of interventions, with the government eventually taking ownership of the system.
This Policy Brief, prepared with the support of UNHCR and NRC, is intended to serve as a reference guide to help all stakeholders understand what their role is in supporting the effective implementation of the Policy and to contribute towards ensuring that the rights of IDPs are protected throughout all phases of displacement. This Policy Brief will be disseminated widely and will accompany training sessions, sensitization initiatives and workshops planned for national and sub-national levels throughout 2015 to ensure that Afghanistan can live up to its commitment to protect IDPs.