Forced Migration Issues and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder among Refugee Camps in Rwanda; A Case of Refugees Adolescents in the Emergency Transit Mechanism - Gashora, Bugesera


  • Habimana Venuste Mount Kenya University, Kigali, Rwanda
  • Dr. Eugenia Nkechi Irechukwu, PhD Mount Kenya University, Kigali, Rwanda



It is widely recognized that forced migration and separation from loved ones can lead to mental health problems in teenagers, with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) being a common issue due to their limited cognitive resources. This study investigates the impact of forced migration on the mental health of adolescent refugees living in Emergency Transit Mechanism (ETM) Gashora, Rwanda. The 169 participants in this quantitative cross-sectional study, whose ages ranged from 10 to 17, had a mean age of 14.31 (SD = 2.25). While structured interviews were used to gather data, random sampling was used to choose study participants. Regression models, Chi square tests, and descriptive statistics were employed in the data analysis. SPSS was used to examine every statistical measurement, and for every test, the significance level was set to 0.05. Of the respondents, 85% were female, 36.1% were illiterate, and 63.9% had only completed elementary school. The distribution of living arrangements was as follows: 26.0% lived alone or with non-family members, 23.1% lived with relatives, and 50.9% lived with parents. Of those surveyed, 32.5 percent had lived in the camp for fewer than six months. According to the study, many of the participants had gone through traumatic experiences associated with migration, such as being subjected to racism and discrimination (86.7%), being separated from family (72.8%), being involved in armed conflicts (78.1%), being the victim of sexual, physical, or morally abusive harassment (65.7%, 66.9%, and 72.2%, respectively), being a victim of human trafficking (71.0%), and being arrested (72.8%). In addition, 78.1% did not have access to shelter, and 82.2% reported having trouble getting healthcare. The findings showed that while a worrying 72.8% of respondents fit into the likely PTSD group, just 27.2% of respondents showed low trauma-related discomfort symptoms. Living in families with four or more people (AOR = 2.171, p 0.05, 95% CI = [1.029, 4.797]), experiencing moral violence (AOR = 2.084, p 0.05, 95% CI = [1.010, 4.297]), and being exposed to armed conflicts are all risk factors. These results highlight the critical need for psychosocial therapies and trauma-focused treatments in refugee camps, especially for recently arrived adolescent refugees who have gone through traumatic migration-related experiences.

Author Biographies

Habimana Venuste, Mount Kenya University, Kigali, Rwanda

Postgraduate student, Arts in Counseling Psychology, Mount Kenya University, Kigali, Rwanda

Dr. Eugenia Nkechi Irechukwu, PhD, Mount Kenya University, Kigali, Rwanda

Mount Kenya University, Rwanda


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How to Cite

Habimana, V., and E. N. Irechukwu. “Forced Migration Issues and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Among Refugee Camps in Rwanda; A Case of Refugees Adolescents in the Emergency Transit Mechanism - Gashora, Bugesera”. Journal of Sociology, Psychology & Religious Studies, vol. 5, no. 2, Dec. 2023, pp. 95-107, doi:10.53819/81018102t2281.