Amanda Poole, Department of Anthropology, received a grant from the Association of Middle East and Africa for her project "An Ethnographic Investigation of Refugee Policy and the Care of Eritrean Youth in Ethiopia." Poole will collaborate with a colleague to conduct ethnographic research in Ethiopia during summer 2016. This research will investigate the role played by Ethiopian refugee policy in the migration decisions of Eritrean youth.
Recently, the growing arrival of unaccompanied minors from Eritrea (averaging 150–200 per month in 2014) has placed the Ethiopian state in the role of guardian or caretaker. Unaccompanied Eritrean youth have become the focus not only of programs and policies designed to care for and educate refugees, but also of programs designed to curb the secondary migration of refugees out of Ethiopia.
Focusing on Ethiopia's out-of-camp schemes, procedures of camp management, and provision of services to unaccompanied minors, Poole's ethnographic research will explore how Ethiopia's policies towards Eritrean refugees may influence Eritrean refugees' decisions to settle in Ethiopia or continue in their attempts, often life-threatening, to reach a country of asylum in western nations.
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