Whether helping refugees integrate into their new host communities or preparing them for return home or resettlement in a third country, JRS Eastern Africa seeks to promote self-sufficiency among refugees.

Livelihood services include helping refugees access employment and land; providing tools, technical training and assistance; and facilitating the establishment of small businesses through provision of grants and loans. Such initiatives are implemented in many spheres, such as farming or production of crafts and other commodities.

For example, in Kakuma, refugees can learn alternative healing practices, such as massage therapy.  At the regional office in Nairobi, the JRS hosts the Mikono shop which sells crafts made by refugees throughout the region

JRS believes that supporting refugees to secure an income has value beyond the economic advantages; self-sufficiency also helps to restore dignity and hope as well as encourages integration into host communities. 

In 2013, JRS Eastern Africa provided livelihood services to nearly 9,000 individuals in Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan and Uganda.