© UNHCR/Samuel Otieno

About us

UNHCR has been operational in Kenya in line with its international mandate and on invitation from the government of Kenya for over fifty years.

UNHCR has been operational in Kenya for over fifty years.  

Kenya is the fifth largest refugee-hosting country in Africa and the thirteenth largest asylum country in the world. The refugee situation in Kenya is protracted, the majority of refugees have resided in the camps for over 30 years with new influxes over the years, mainly from Somalia and South Sudan.  

UNHCR works closely with the Government of Kenya and numerous national and international partners in providing protection and assistance to refugees and asylum seekers from across the East, Horn and Great Lakes Region. UNHCR also supports returnees (former Kenyan refugees abroad coming back to Kenya) with humanitarian assistance 

UNHCR advocates on behalf of stateless persons in Kenya and with the support of different Government of Kenya actors, supports access to documentation (birth certificates and national ID cards). 

The Government of Kenya is currently shifting its approach toward refugees, which aims to transition refugees from camps into integrated settlements. The multi-year “Shirika Plan” is a pioneering initiative currently under development that could benefit refugees and host communities alike. More information here.    

UNHCR globally 

UNHCR, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, is a global organization dedicated to saving lives, protecting rights and building a better future for refugees, forcibly displaced communities and stateless people. 

 We work to ensure that everybody has the right to seek asylum and find safe refuge, having fled violence, persecution, war or disaster at home. 

Since 1950, our vision is a world where every person forced to flee can build a better future.