While much of the existing information on the education of African refugees in Egypt has focused on children, this study reveals critical issues regarding the education of adults. This thesis has three major purposes. It aims to explore the different educational opportunities available for adult African refugees in Cairo. It seeks to examine the challenges that affect their education. It also analyzes the role of education in the empowerment of adult African refugees who either seek to integrate locally, return to their home country, or get resettled to another state. Research for this study was conducted over a period of three months in the city of Cairo. Substantial information was obtained from interviews with 30 adult students of two major refugee educational programs and four representatives from different organizations and institutions. On the basis of the results of this research, it can be concluded that due to the lack of access to formal education, the only educational opportunity available for the majority of adult African refugees is English classes provided by alternative refugee educational programs. It can also be concluded that many of the restrictions and obstacles faced by African refugees in Cairo have a negative effect on their education. Findings reveal that education, particularly English knowledge, significantly empowers adult refugees. One of the most significant results of this study is that education showed to be a powerful tool in improving the situation of many of the refugees residing in Cairo.


Center for Migration and Refugee Studies

Degree Name

MA in Migration & Refugee Studies

Graduation Date


Submission Date

February 2013

First Advisor

Ullah, Ahsan

Committee Member 1

Zohry, Ayman

Committee Member 2

Khallaf, Shaden


103 p.

Document Type

Master's Thesis

Library of Congress Subject Heading 1

Refugees -- Egypt -- Cairo.

Library of Congress Subject Heading 2

Refugees -- Legal status, laws, etc. -- Egypt -- Cairo.


The author retains all rights with regard to copyright. The author certifies that written permission from the owner(s) of third-party copyrighted matter included in the thesis, dissertation, paper, or record of study has been obtained. The author further certifies that IRB approval has been obtained for this thesis, or that IRB approval is not necessary for this thesis. Insofar as this thesis, dissertation, paper, or record of study is an educational record as defined in the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 USC 1232g), the author has granted consent to disclosure of it to anyone who requests a copy.

Institutional Review Board (IRB) Approval

Approval has been obtained for this item