Remaking home: The importance of engagement in agricultural livelihood activities for resettled refugees

Title: Remaking home: The importance of engagement in agricultural livelihood activities for resettled refugees

Author: Penkala, Kristen

Date: May 2014

Description: Master’s Paper, Clark University, Department of International Development, Community and Environment

Forced displacement separates individuals from their homes, land and livelihoods. This study explores the experience of resettled refugees in the U.S. who were farmers in their homeland and the impact of their reconnecting to the land through farming in the U.S. The study uses the Sustainable Livelihoods Approach to assess the importance of the project. Based on a combination of participant observation and informal and in-depth interviews with the resettled refugees on New Land Farm in Worcester, Massachusetts, the author identifies the factors that enable refugees to feel “at home” through livelihood activities. The findings emphasize the importance of livelihood for individuals during their transition to a new home.  The author concludes that resettlement agencies need to reevaluate their programs and include participation in familiar livelihoods.   

Keywords: refugees, resettlement, farming, livelihood, sustainable livelihoods

Cataloged by: Selina Sikder/Peter Nelson/ B. J. Perkins

 

 

 

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