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Live from Ethiopia: Women in Bambasi and Sherkole refugee camps » Women's Courage

Live from Ethiopia: Women in Bambasi and Sherkole refugee camps

March 10th, 2013 by brudolph Leave a reply »

Over the last couple of days I got the opportunity to talk to a few refugee women about their situation. I would upload photos but it seems we’ve reached the wordpress limit!

Women and work

The women in the camp definitely do the majority of the work whether it’s cooking or actually building their hut. You can almost always find the woman outside cooking and the man inside their hut relaxing the tent. You also see women pretty much carrying entire trees on their backs for firewood. I have no idea how these women were able to do this. One of the sadder parts though was how ingrained this culture was, to the point where women didn’t even think it ¬†was odd that they were doing all the work.

Talking to women

One other pretty interesting thing that I noticed was the difference in talking to women when men were and were not around. When interviewing one woman, we were able to get loads of interesting information when there was no man around. However a few times we tried talking to women when there was a man present and either the man would answer or the woman would simply give us yes or no answers. In another interview, we asked to take a photo of the family and one man suggested that we take one of the men and one of the women and children.

Miscellaneous

There were lots of awesome GBV interventions happening in Sherkole. IRC, the partner in charge of the program, switched the name to Community Wellness to help remove the stigma associated with GBV. Unfortunately now it’s harder for refugees to know what CW is about. The Sherkole camp also had a women’s group which had lots of participation. The Bambasi camp didn’t have a women’s group setup yet, but all of the women I talked to said that they would join one if it existed which I thought was encouraging.

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