In Pictures: Behind every statistic, there is a story

In April 2015, thousands of Burundians began fleeing to neighbouring countries, following the outbreak of pre-election violence in their home country. For many, it was not the first time they had been forced to flee. 

The Red Cross Red Crescent is focused on meeting the humanitarian needs of migrants, protecting them, preventing loss of life, treating people with dignity, and calls for a humanitarian approach to tackling their vulnerabilities. 

There are an estimated 19 million migrants in Africa (IOM, 2013).

Behind every statistic, there is a story. These are just a few:

Burundi refugee Beatrice

Sibomana Beatrice, 31, at the post-operation ward in the Nyarugusu camp health centre in Tanzania

I just had a C-section in the operating theatre. My baby girl Felicia is only a few hours old. This is my third child.

My family has been here at the camp for the past three weeks. My husband is taking care of the children while I am here in the hospital with my sister.

I’m very sad because we’re very poor and don’t have enough food. I don’t even have clothes for my newborn. 


Burundi refugee Severin

Habonimana Severin, 20, lives in the tent village at the Nyarugusu refugee camp in Tanzania

I fled Burundi with my brother who is 17 years old. We are orphaned but a lady is taking care of us and two other children. We have been in Nyarugusu now for two weeks.

Life has so far been good here in the camp except that there really isn’t anything to do and the schools are not open. Also, it’s a bit cold for my taste.

Back home in Burundi I was a student and also a Red Cross volunteer for three months before we left. In the future, I wish to study to become a businessman or maybe a translator, since I like studying languages. My brother would like to become a scientist as he is interested in biology and chemistry.


Burundi refugees Teresa

Teresa Seheye, 70, waiting for the ferry in Kagunga, Tanzania

I’m waiting for my name to be called so that we can finally board the ferry to Kigoma and eventually get to the Nyarugusu refugee camp. We’ve already been waiting here for two weeks and two days.

I take care of my five grandchildren. Thankfully, the eldest can already help me with the others. We came from Njanzatake in Burundi. Normally the trip would take six hours by foot. For us it took the whole day.

I came as a refugee to Tanzania the first time already in 1972. During the past five years I got to spend in my home country, I was a farmer. Now we don’t have any food or money. We are completely dependent on the help from others.