Growing Up In Dadaab Refugee Camp

I’m working on various projects, both written and otherwise, so am happy to share with you today someone else’s words.

Mohamed Asad Hussein is a young Somali writer. I recently discovered his blog when a friend from Minnesota shared it with me. He lives and writes from Dadaab Refugee Camp in Kenya. He was among┬áthe first to be born there, meaning he has lived his entire life between nations. He is a talented writer with a valuable perspective and a unique story. I’m always happy to connect with writers and especially writers like him, Somalis telling their own stories.

refugee camp

Here is an excerpt of his essay (keep in mind that he is writing in his second language, a courageous feat that would be laughable if I tried to do so in Somali or French): Story of My Family in Dadaab Refugee Camp

My family is one of the few who have been in Dadaab refugee camps since the early 1990s. Our story goes beyond Dadaab, stemming its edges from Ethiopia, setting its home in Somalia, and throwing its shadows to Kenya.

My parents had hitherto lived in Ethiopia before they sought sanctuary in Somalia when skirmishes amongst Borana, Gabrii, Gujii and Garii sent them away from the country, starting a journey which would find them in Dadaab camps, though they never envisaged they would spend decades in a refugee camp.

Shariff Hussein, as my father is called, settled in Luuq, a small town in Southwestern Gedo in Somalia, where his first children, Maryan and Ibrahim, were soon born. Then war promptly broke out when the Siyyad Barre regime was ousted in 1991. My family moved again to Baidoa. Here Dhaahiro was born.

Click here to read the rest: A Story of My Family in Dadaab Refugee Camp

*image via Flickr