About

Nyarugusu refugee camp is located about 150 kms from Lake Tanganyika in Kigoma province, Tanzania. It was established in 1996 when war broke out in the neighbouring country of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Over 150,000 people from eastern DR Congo crossed Lake Tanganyika to escape the political and ethnic violence. Now, 18 years later, Nyarugusu is still home to about 70,000 people, who cannot return to DR Congo due to sustained war and instability.

This blog was created by Oliver M. Mweneake and his wife, Miriam Mweneake, after their recent visit to Nyarugusu. The blog aims to bring awareness to the continuous and urgent state of crisis that Nyarugusu residents face every day.  It also seeks to create a platform for Nyarugusu refugees to voice their needs, hopes for the future, and remind the world of their everyday struggles.

Many parents and young people in Nyarugusu camp strongly believe that education is crucial to their future outside the camp. Successful high school graduates desire to study university or college outside the camp, a goal which is clearly attainable through educational sponsorship. Among other purposes, this blog seeks to connect with individuals and groups who want to partner with Nyarugusu refugees to improve their lives.

Oliver M Mweneake, holds a Bachelor degree of Social Work and Community Development from Hope Africa University, a Master degree in Leadership from Pan Africa Christian University and a Master of Social Work from University of Waterloo. He works at the Hincks-Dellcrest Centre in Toronto as a family therapist mainly providing services to the Francophone population. He is originally from the Democratic Republic of Congo, a high school graduate from Nyarugusu refugee camp, and a passionate advocate for partnership between Nyarugusu refugees and anyone interested in their well-being.

Miriam Mweneake, BA, is a freelance editor and translator. She has worked in various capacities with refugees and immigrants, and desires to foster social justice through partnerships between people, cultures, and countries. Originally from Canada, she lived in Colombia for two years working with a community affected by Colombia’s armed conflict. During her recent visit to Nyarugusu camp, she was alarmed at the continuous state of crisis that Nyarugusu residents have been forced to endure for the last 18 years. Along with her husband, she desires to mobilize people and resources to create real changes in Nyarugusu residents’ lives.

Oliver and Miriam Mweneake

Oliver and Miriam Mweneake

7 thoughts on “About

  1. Hello,
    I’m Zahra Fazal, grade 11 student at the International school of Tanganyika.
    I was surfing the browser to broaden my understanding of the Nyaragusu camp when I came across your site, I must say I am highly impressed with your articles and the thought of sharing the refugee’s voices.

    This year IST will be hosting the annual Global issues service summit (GISS) and as part of the delegation team, I have decided to address the refugee crisis in Tanzania and the living conditions of the Nyarugusu camp located in Kigoma.
    It would be an absolute delight if I could meet up with you to hear your thoughts or personal experience.
    We are hoping to develop a local solution to a problem that the refugees in Nyaragusu face and it would be an honor to work with you.

    Thanking you in advance,
    Zahra Fazal.
    GISS Delegate, International school of Tanganyika.

  2. Hello,
    I’m Zahra Fazal, grade 11 student at the International school of Tanganyika.
    This year IST will be hosting the annual Global issues service summit (GISS) and as part of the delegation team, I have decided to address the refugee crisis in Tanzania and the living conditions of the Nyarugusu camp located in Kigoma.

    It would be an absolute delight if I could meet up with you to hear your thoughts or personal experience.
    We are hoping to develop a local solution to a problem that the refugees in Nyaragusu face and it would be an honor to work with you.

    Thanking you in advance,
    Zahra Fazal.
    GISS Delegate, International school of Tanganyika.
    Email: zahra-fazal@istafrica.com

    • Hi Zahra,
      Thank you so very much for your comments and encouraging words. It is humbling to hear about your school initiative. I will definitely be happy to connect with you and share my personal experiences. I will also be interested in learning more about your school and the global summit initiative. Thank you again for comnecting with me. I dont know where your current residence is but we can plan to even meet through skpye or other ways. I am in Toronto Canada. tyank you. Oliver

  3. Hi am Charles Kingi a graduate in Philosophy and religious studies, from Urbaniana university in Rome Italy under the catholic Church,,have been touched by your words which you described about Nyarugusu camp,,am a Tanzanian, I would like to volunteer in one way or another in helping refugees if you don’t mind just contact me in my e-mail: kingcharless884@gmail.com God bless you.

  4. Hello Oliver,
    I just found your website, I’m a teacher happy to welcome a kid from Nyagurusu Camp.
    I would like to know if it’s possible to share information or if you have pics that I can show to this kid, just to let him know we are connected to his history. (I’m working in a french school in Canada but the 3 kids don’t speak french, just Swahili)
    Thanks,
    M.Stadion

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