Home Institution

University of Pittsburgh

Publication Date

Spring 2014

Program Name

Cameroon: Social Pluralism and Development


This paper is the product of a study that examines the experiences of urban refugees in Yaoundé, Cameroon. Refugees around the world, often victims of unthinkable human rights abuses, are forced to rely fully on the hospitality and protection of the international community. This unique relationship between a refugee and his/her host state can present serious challenges to both parties. This research examined the resources available to refugees in Yaoundé, evaluated their effectiveness, and explored possibilities for improving the experience of these urban refugees. I utilized eighteen structured interviews with refugees and four follow-­‐up in depth interviews with three refugees and the director of a local NGO, Respect Cameroon. My results indicated that the resources available to refugees are primarily provided by UNHCR and local NGO’s. I also concluded that these resources exhibit low levels of effectiveness, and could be improved through increased dialogue between organizations and a focus on increasing refugee’s knowledge of their legal rights.


African Studies | Family, Life Course, and Society | Inequality and Stratification | International and Area Studies | Peace and Conflict Studies | Politics and Social Change | Race and Ethnicity | Social Welfare | Sociology of Culture | Urban Studies


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