Difficult and Unsafe Journeys: The Separation of Youth from their Fathers

Research output: Other contribution


According to the UN Refugee Agency, [1] many families are embarking on difficult and unsafe journeys to flee from “political instability, environmental degradation and natural disasters,” [2] among other reasons. [3] As a result, family members, especially fathers, [4] may separate prior to or in the process of reaching their destinations. [5] This creates unique challenges [6] for the rest of the family unit, especially the most vulnerable members, including children [7] and youth. [8] Therefore, an examination of the unique challenges of a father’s absence [9] on youth within the refugee context, in which youth are already vulnerable, is unprecedented. [10] Using the life-course theory as its theoretical framework, [11] this paper will show that a lack of resident and involved fathers [12] affects refugee youth’s wellbeing in three major overarching and interconnected areas: family functioning, health and economic wellbeing. [13] This discussion will aim to firstly, add to existing research on the effect of separation on the social relationships of refugees, [14] and secondly, contribute to growing research on the roles of fathers in youths’ transitions to adulthood.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherInternational Federation for Family Development
Number of pages4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2018


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