Case Profile

The following case study illustrates the situation of one refugee assisted by HRTK:

M is a single woman from the Democratic Republic of the Congo whose family faced persecution and violent assaults from rebels, government soldiers, and neighbors, due to their mixed ethnicity. M and her family fled to a nearby village, but soon faced the risk of starvation because of a food shortage created by the ongoing violence. M’s older brother was soon abducted by rebels but managed to escape, returning home only to be falsely accused by neighbors of being a spy for the rebels. Soon thereafter, M’s mother was murdered because of her ethnicity and her brother was killed for having fled from the rebels. M was ultimately taken as a rebel leader’s “wife” but was able to run away during commotion caused by an opposing rebel group attack. She immediately fled to a nearby country where HRTK works.

There, M received refugee status and found work as a hairdresser. One day in the salon, M was approached by a woman who alleged that she knew both M and her brother, falsely accusing them of passing government secrets to the rebels. Some days later, as M left her workplace, she was grabbed by three men who made the same false accusations against her. Fearful for her life, M left her job and changed residence.

M’s efforts to find another job were curtailed when her prospective employer requested sexual favors before he would hire her. Additionally, in spite of changing residences M was informed that two Congolese men had come to her home looking for her, terrifying her with the possibility that her earlier assailants had traced her.

M lived in fear for her life in her country of asylum, despite reporting the matter to the local police. For all of these reasons HRTK determined that M was not safe and was a candidate for resettlement to another country. HRTK staff prepared a case for submission to one of the three resettlement governments with which HRTK works and M was successfully resettled to North America.