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Humanitarian Assistance

Project Name: Refugees Act and Communicate for Health (REACH): Using Technology to Increase Health Literacy and Health Care Access for Refugees in Turkey(Phase 2)
Project Description: Turkey has the highest number of refugees in the world, with 3.6 million Syrian nationals due to the protracted Syrian crisis. These refugees are limited by factors such as availability, affordability, geographic accessibility, acceptability, quality, and language barriers, resulting in extremely limited accessibility to health care. The TaiwanICDF cooperated with Columbia University's Center for Sustainable Development (CSD) to implement the "Refugees Act and Communicate for Health (REACH): Using Technology to Increase Health Literacy and Health Care Access for Refugees in Turkey (Phase 1)" in 2019. The prototype of the mHealth application has been completed, and the two organizations have decided to continue the second phase of the project to promote the mHealth application. Overall, the project components include:
1. REACH mHealth application user experiences of refugee and local youth is documented through a quantitative pilot study in Istanbul.
2. The REACH mHealth application is fully developed and ready to be freely downloaded in Android and iOS versions.
3. Research findings and information about the REACH mHealth application are disseminated to youth and stakeholders in Turkey and abroad via the REACH website, social media, outreach activities and scientific publications.

Implementation Start Date: 2020/12/28
Implementation End Date: 2021/12/27
Source of Funding: The TaiwanICDF
Project Objectives: Refugee youth and disadvantaged youth in Turkey have improved health literacy, access to health information and health care via the REACH mHealth application.
Executing Agency: Center for Sustainable Development(CSD), Columbia University
Implementation Arrangement: The TaiwanICDF will designate a consultant stationed in Turkey to participate in the project or dispatch a volunteer to assist in the implementation of the project; CSD will implement the proposed activities and liaise with local NGOs and government offices.
Current Progress: As of the end of June 2021, the following activities have been carried out:
1. Organized six e-meetings with project team members to discuss and monitor project activities.
2. Updated the project website content (reach-health.com; reach-health.net; reach-health.org) in English, Turkish and Arabic. Changed the website and application development team in the second quarter, and continued to renew the website.
3. Completed the training of five data collectors to conduct the survey of the application experience, and completed telephone surveys and data analysis of 242 Istanbul youths between 18 and 24 years old.
4. Conducted five mHealth application development workshops. 25 young refugees participated to help improve the app prototype and 9 university and graduate students from different backgrounds helped to develop the mapping services and FAQ part for the application.
5. The comprehensive study on the usage of the application has received IRB approval from both Istanbul University and Columbia University, and data collectors have begun to collect data.
6. Invited the representative of Taipei Economic and Cultural Mission in Ankara to visit the Ministry of Health to explain the project.
7. The project conference paper was accepted and will be presented in the European Public Health Conference held in November 2021, and project findings will also be published in the European Journal of Public Health.
Project Coordinator Name: Richard C. Hung
Project Coordinator Phone: 02-28732323 ext.315
Project Coordinator E-mail: richard.hung@icdf.org.tw
Cooperating Country: Middle East, Turkey
Cooperating Organization: Center for Sustainable Development, Columbia University(CSD)
Themes: Public Health, Information and Communications Technology
Project status: Projects under implementation
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  • Date:2020/12/30
  • Date Updated:2021/9/6