International Journal of Social Policy & Education

ISSN 2689-4998 (print), 2689-5013 (online)

Integration into Mainstream Society and the use of Public Assistance: A Study First Generation Somali Refugees in a Midwestern City

Tohoro F. Akakpo, PhD, MSW, MPA; James R. Brown, PhD, MSW; Isaac Karikari, PhD, MSW & Gifty Dede Ashirifi


First generation Somali refugees in the United Stated States could experience both language and cultural barriers along with conflicting identity could hinder economic independence. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to explore the correlation between cultural orientation of first-generation Somali refugees and the utilization of public assistance. Using purposive sampling method, data were collected from individuals who self-identified as first-generation Somali refugees (N=166). A quantitative data analysis method using SmartPLS3.0 to predict the need of public assistance on level on integration into host culture. The Somali identity (63.0 %) and American identity (57.0%) were explained by the full model. The study summary revealed that the percentage first generation Somali refugees who integrated into mainstream society was lower than those who did not in seeking public assistance. We suggested facilitation of full integration of the first-generation Somali refugees could reduce dependence on public assistance.