REACH: Using Technology to Increase Health Literacy and Health Care Access for Refugees in Turkiye, Lebanon, and Jordan

Lead PI: Yanis Ben Amor, Ozge Karadag
August 2019 - June 2023
Europe ; Asia ; Global ; Turkiye ; Lebanon ; Jordan
Project Type: Research Outreach Education


REACH is a regional initiative of CSD, which aims to bridge the gap in health literacy and health care access among refugee and local youth via digital health technologies in Turkiye, Lebanon, and Jordan. Co-led by Dr. Yanis Ben Amor and Dr. Ozge Karadag, the project employs Community Based Participatory Action Research (CBPAR) framework, which has been recognized as a unique approach to conduct research with - rather than on - communities. Using CBPAR and implementation science methods, REACH aims to assess the impact of information and communication technologies (ICTs) on accessing reliable health information and available health services and to contribute to the limited scientific literature on ICT interventions for health in countries that host large refugee populations.

Supported by UNFPA, TaiwanICDF, Blue Chip Foundation and Columbia University`s President`s Global Innovation Fund, the project is implemented with the collaboration of CSD, Columbia Global Centers | Istanbul and Amman, Istanbul University, Anadolu University, American University of Beirut, German Jordanian University, Bir IZ Association, Community Volunteers Foundation (TOG), Youth Approaches to Health Association (SGYD) and Digital Opportunity Trust (DOT)-Lebanon.

With a strong adult-youth partnership, the project includes stakeholders meetings, a mixed-methods baseline study with young people, health service providers and health policy makers, in addition to communication and dissemination activities such as organization of photo exhibitions, panels, and production of policy documents and scientific publications. REACH has been working with refugee and local youth, software developers, academia, local health authorities, UN organizations and NGOs to develop an mHealth application (REACH4Health) to increase health literacy and improve health care access among young refugee and host communities.

REACH4Health has recently joined the World Health Organization's Digital Health Atlas ( and the DiGi YOUTH best practices database ( 

For more information about REACH4Health and the REACH Initiative;

Please email us at or please visit


REACH4Health Web:

REACH4Health Instagram: @reach4healthapp

REACH4Health Facebook:



UNFPA, TaiwanICDF, Blue Chip Foundation, and Columbia University (PGIF)


Yanis Ben Amor, Ozge Karadag, Selma Karabey, Nuhad Yazbik-Dumit, Sahar Makhamreh, Anindita Dasgupta, E. Nezih Orhon, Ahmad Al Mousa, Inanc Sumbuloglu, Damla Ceyhan


Columbia Global Centers | Istanbul and Columbia Global Centers | Amman


Istanbul University, American University of Beirut (AUB), German Jordanian University, Anadolu University, Bir IZ Association, Community Volunteers Association (TOG), Youth Approaches to Health Association (SGYD), DOT-Digital Opportunity Trust (Lebanon).


mobile health (mhealth) action research healthcare access at-risk populations community involvement refugees global health access to resources youth health promotion displacement migration


Sustainable living