From UN Habitat
Kalobeyei (Kenya) 31 August 2016 – UN-Habitat is working in agreement with the County Government, UNHCR and the local community to support planning for integrated refugees and host communities and developing a spatial plan for the Kalobeyei New Settlement that will be sustainable, inclusive and resilient. UN-Habitat is working on the spatial planning component for the new settlement and supporting integration of the host and refugee communities. A rapid assessment has been completed and a series of participatory processes are ongoing, forming the basic for a general undertaking of the local context and the primary development vision.
Further, UN-Habitat team is working on a series of analyses for an understanding of the specific relation between refugee and host communities, a potential for integration through spatial planning. The research and contextual analysis component is led by Mr. Romanus Opyio and Mr. Felix Mutua, working with a team of researchers from Nairobi as well as local youth in the data collection process. The survey team began with the mapping of the various actors and stakeholders involved in the Kalobeyei integrated settlement project.
This initial mapping helped the team to familiarize themselves with the new site, the old camp and its hinterland. Prior to data collection, the UN-Habitat researchers and project team organized a series of trainings with youth groups in Kakuma and Kalobeyei from both refugee and host communities where data collection and survey principles were explained in the context of a socio-economic and livelihood analysis of the area.
Meanwhile the team was also concurrently involved in a field survey covering the site and its context to map physiographical features, drainage, as well as mapping field conditions. UN-Habitat, with the support of Peace Winds Japan as implementation partner, has mobilized a total of 40 youths, male and female, to support the research component as assistants. The youth members were introduced to the project and have been trained in quantitative research, data collection and surveying basics.
Their work is very important for a comprehensive contextual analysis to be discussed with and validated by all relevant stakeholders for the spatial planning of the Kalobeyei Refugee Settlement. The training was comprised of an introduction to the project, a description of the research objectives, going through the research methodology and encouraging an understanding of the importance of having accurate data. The training session provided the youth with valuable skills necessary in research, such as different research methodologies, aspects of critical thinking and knowledge management.