Daadab, the documentary

by Oriol Andres Gallart. Average Reading Time: almost 2 minutes.

Dadaab refugee camp in Kenya, is considered the largest in the world by the UN. It was created over twenty years ago, in 1991, by UNHCR to house Somalis fleeing conflict then emerging. Currently, it hosts almost 500,000 people. The documentary ‘Dadaab’, produced by Contrast, discloses one of the lesser known sides of the conflict in Somalia while exploring the personal dynamics that are generated in the camp by tackling the life contradictions faced by its inhabitants. The documentary was first broadcast in July 2012 in the program ‘Una altra mirada’ of Catalan Television (TVC)..

A documentary by Oriol Andrés, Carlos Castro and Gemma Garcia


Can a shelter become a prison? “We cannot leave the camp neither go back to our country nor prosper”. At the same time, can a shelter become homeland? “In this place I grow myself, I studied, worked and became father. I feel home”. This is a contradiction faced by refugees of the largest camp worldwide, Dadaab, in north-eastern Kenya.

This is the case of Omar, Hassan and Mohamed, three Somalian young men who arrived to Dadaab in 1991, when the war started in Somalia and the camp was created. Their memories of their previous lives are reduced to some blurry images. In these two decades, they have become part of an incipient middle class, but despite that, their aim is to get one of the prized visas to start a new life in another country.

While they think on leaving, 6.000 people arrive every month from Somalia. N-0 is one of the areas where new arrivals are settled and Mohamed Alí is its leader. For them, the camp means safety, but restarting life there is difficult either.

A few of them leave; a lot arrive; all of them “hoping the best but prepared for the worst”.


Title: Dadaab

Country of Production: Spain / Kenya

Year of Production: 2009-2011

Original languages: Somali and English

Subtitles: English / Catalan / Spanish

Duration: 50.50 minutos


Produced by: Oriol Andrés, Carlos Castro, Gemma Garcia

Production: Contrast / Fora de Quadre

Directed by: Oriol Andrés, Carlos Castro, Gemma Garcia

Written by: Oriol Andrés, Carlos Castro, Gemma Garcia, Miquel Martí Freixa

Camera and Direct Sound: Oriol Andrés, Carlos Castro, Gemma Garcia

Edition: María Romero

Sound Edition: Susanna Carreras

Original Format: HDV

Format of exhibition: DVD / HDCAM

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