A Clash of Cultures

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Ms Yusuf is a young Somali woman (19 years old) who left Somaliland in late 2017 following the death of her father. “After my father died I could not find anyone that could provide the same support to me so I decided to leave the area.”

She travelled on her own to Yemen and experienced a very new culture from the time of her arrival. “The culture was different from the Somaliland culture I was used to, someone had to accompany me when I wanted to go to the market.”

After a difficult year in Yemen, Ms Yusuf decided to return to Somaliland in November 2018. “It is very difficult to start a small business in Yemen as the nationals will tell you that they are unemployed, hence how can a foreigner make a business in their country. The security also got worse and resulted in explosions in Sana, Yemen. You live in fear.”

“IOM provided me with health support and transportation from Yemen and to our final destination in Somaliland.” In the future Ms Yusuf hopes to specialize in health and or technical skills.

She wants other Somalis especially women to know that “life in Yemen is very difficult and only housemaid work is available. For women it’s very difficult to get out as you risk your life. It’s also difficult to use public taxis without anyone accompanying you as they could take you.”

  • Meet Ms Yusuf, a Somali migrant assisted to return home safely by IOM in June 2019, as part of the IOM Somalia Migrant Protection and Assistance Programme - with funding from KS Relief.