2 Migration and Refugees


Migration Anthropology Consultants (MAC), LLC conducts research and provides reports on the social and cultural characteristics of migrating human populations in Africa and Asia.

Emphasis is also given to the social, economic and environmental impact of migrant populations' internal displacement and the international movement of refugees.

International agencies and non-governmental organizations need current and accurate demographic, social and cultural information about the human populations they serve.
Refugees in Maratane Refugee Camp, Northern Mozambique
Photo by JEL ©

Humanitarian and disaster relief agencies, international donors, community development organizations and international technology transfer providers also need a clear and accurate understanding of the various populations they assist.

An objective description and analysis of a people's social and cultural characteristics and assistance needs is required for cost- effectively appropriating and disbursing funds, and allocating other resources.

MAC can provide such information and analyses based on archival and other source research, and firsthand in-the-field data collection.


Migration Anthropology Consultants (MAC), LLC provides refugee resettlement referral case preparation analysis, quality assurance and training.
A caseworker prepares a resettlement referral
for a Burundian refugee father and his son
Photo by JEL ©
~    Problem

Many refugee resettlement referrals are prepared in a manner that does not optimally serve the otherwise qualified refugee.  Consequently, many bona fide refugees who are presented for resettlement consideration are denied.

In many cases, a better prepared referral, and a better trained referral-preparing staff, can more effectively present the credible facts of an applicant's identity and background.  This could make the critical difference between a refugee applicant being given or denied an interview, or being approved or denied refugee status.

Problems found in many refugee resettlement referrals are unintended errors of omission on the part of poorly trained program officers or case workers, or the refugees.

Other inaccuracies, falsities or omissions are acts of desperation on the part of refugees.  Many are driven by their hope of escaping years of difficult life in a refugee camp, and the dream of securing a better future and education for their children.  Still others are non-refugees seeking illegal entry into the resettlement country.

Such problems found in referrals include but are not limited to the following:

     +    Misrepresentation of one's true identity and that of others on the case.

     +    Identity and biographic information about the refugee applicant contained in the referral is inconsistent with other documentation available about the refugee.

Refugee registration fingerprinting, UNHCR, Kenya
Photo by JEL ©

        +    Exaggeration or falsification of the harm or persecution in the background stories they provide to NGO caseworkers.
Poorly prepared and submitted referrals can not only facilitate immigration fraud and illegal immigration, they can also damage the integrity of the NGO submitting them and the resettlement program.

Further, a poorly prepared refugee resettlement referral may enable an impostor, criminal or person of security concern to enter a resettlement country.

~    How MAC Can Help

Migration Anthropology Consultants (MAC), LLC provides assessment and training services to international and non-governmental organizations, based in the US and overseas, on refugee resettlement referral preparation.
Refugee children in western Tanzania
© Photo by JEL