This paper frames the political import of refugees’ material practices in Kakuma Refugee Camp through critical reflection on Eyal Weizman’s notion of the humanitarian present. To begin, I explore how the production of the refugee camp as a space of containment takes place not through a unified humanitarian calculus, but through a set of articulated practices undertaken by various actors—governments, police, aid agencies, host populations, and refugees—all of which have profoundly material manifestations. Secondly, I argue that refugees’ pursuits of material well-being through semilicit and illicit means should be read as a practical material critique of the declining standards of humanitarian support. These efforts to achieve sustenance, invest in the future, and exert autonomy serve as a public reminder that humanitarian assistance fails to meet the minimum standard to ensure human existence, and that refugees aim for something more than mere survival.