Mass Information in Support of Peaceful Congolese and Burundian Refugee Repatriation
In 2007, Search for Common Ground (SFCG), with financial support from the United States Department of State: Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration (PRM), launched the twelve-month project, Mass Information In Support of Congolese and Burundian Refugees. The overarching goal of this project was to foster peaceful reintegration of Congolese returnees in South Kivu and Katanga and Burundian returnees across the Democratic Republic of Congo. This goal was supported by two specific objectives:
- To provide information to refugee populations that would enable them to make informed decisions about return; and
- To foster dialogue and collaborative approaches to conflict between returnees and residents in the zones of return.
The project used radio programming, training and participatory theater to meet both of these objectives, targeting Congolese and Burundian returnees and residents in Eastern DRC and Burundi respectively, as well as Congolese refugees in Burundi, Tanzania, and Zambia and Burundian refugees in Tanzania.
To assess the project’s achievements in light of its objectives, the final report of the Mass Information project drew upon quantitative and qualitative data collected through key informant interviews, focus group discussions, and surveys. The SFCG DRC Design Monitoring & Evaluation (DM&E) Coordinator, assisted by eighteen additional researchers, carried out the evaluation, taking care to ensure gender and cultural sensitivity throughout the data collection process. Key findings from the report, presented here, indicate a number of positive outcomes from this project.