Large numbers of Ethiopian women seek domestic work in the Middle East Corridor—a significant social trend that reflects a key livelihood strategy used by Ethiopian families and communities in the face of widespread poverty. Research related to this type of migration is extensive, but mainly concentrated on the “push” and “pull” factors and the potential risks of labor exploitation, trafficking, and resultant threats to migrants’ physical, mental, and sexual health. The research presented here represents one of the few studies examining how women plan their migration experiences, whom they rely on for emotional, economic, or practical assistance, and what roles are played by formal recruiters and informal brokers in women’s journeys from Ethiopia to their destination countries, as well as their role after arrival and in cases where the women wish to return to Ethiopia. This report presents findings from the first two phases of the Meneshachin (“Our Departure”) qualitative study, which examines the practices of recruitment and migration facilitation for women from Ethiopia for the purpose of taking up domestic labor in the Middle East, in destinations such as Kuwait, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and United Arab Emirates.
Busza, Joanna, Zewdneh Sabe, and Cathy Zimmerman. 2022. "The role of agents and brokers in facilitating Ethiopian women into domestic work in the Middle East: Findings from the Meneshachin (‘Our Departure’) study on responsible recruitment models." Addis Ababa: The Freedom Fund.