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By Godfrey Olukya 18-6-2013

International organization for immigration(IOM) has said in a statement that it is partnering with a Kenyan NGO called Heshima Kenya, to provide clothing for refugees departing from Kenya and traveling to the United States as part of the United States refugee admissions programme.

Somali, Ethiopian, Sudanese and Congolese refugees from Kenya’s Kakuma and Dadaab refugee camps are periodically brought to the IOM’s transit centre in Nairobi to complete preparations for their journey to the United States.

According to IO, every departing family is given a flight kit which includes clothing,shoes, toiletries, diapers, snacks and drinking water.

These items are important during the refugees’ journey, as they often do not have adequate or appropriate clothing for their transition
to life in the United States.

The clothing provided for female beneficiaries are made by refugee women through Heshima Kenya’s Maisha Collective. Based in Nairobi, Heshima Kenya provides protection to unaccompanied refugee minors and young refugee women without family support.

The Maisha Collective allows these young women to learn skills and earn an income by making hand dyed scarves and dresses. In 2013 about 500 women and girls will receive clothing and scarves made by the Maisha Collective.

Kenya hosts over 600,000 registered refugees, many of who have been living in refugee camps for more than two decades. This year some 2,000 of them will resettle to the United States.

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