CBSR IV – Za’atari Refugee Camp

Connecting refugees with social support, healthcare, community cohesion and professional and educational opportunities for a more equitable and sustainable community.

Community Based Support to Refugees 4 (CBSR IV) targets Syrian and non-Syrian refugees in both out-of-camp/urban and camp settings, in addition to vulnerable members of the Jordanian host community. This project builds on the previous iterations implemented by IRD/Blumont through a protection and community-based approach to guide the project’s delivery of services toward achieving the overall objectives.

The four overarching objectives of CBSR IV are to:

  • Improve access to primary healthcare for persons of concern (PC);
  • Enhance access to services for persons with specific needs (PWSN), including psychosocial issues, disabilities, injuries, chronic diseases and survivors of Sexual and Gender-based Violence (SGBV);
  • Support and expand community mobilization and self-management among refugees and Jordanians in urban host communities; and
  • Improve access to reproductive health and HIV services.

In Za’atari refugee camp, IRD/Blumont plays a key role in connecting refugees with essential services and opportunities for development and participation through its four major components—case management, community health, community mobilization and community engagement.

Through effective case management, CBSR IV serves and protects the most vulnerable groups of refugees, including people with disabilities (PWDs), the elderly, female-headed households, single parents, unaccompanied or separated children and survivors of SGBV, among others. The CBSR IV program is supported by social workers present in each district to serve refugees by following up on previously identified vulnerable cases, identifying new cases through home visitsand conducting vulnerability assessments that contribute to the Refugee Assessment Information System (RAIS) databaseto ensure consistent service provision.Social workers also conduct a series of awareness sessions each month, which not only aim to inform at-risk groups of services available to them, but alsoto provide a space for socializing, networking, sharing experiences and offering peer support.

The community health component in Za’atari works to reinforce the right to healthcare, as well as to create awareness and increased access to available healthcare services for all refugees in Za’atari camp. Additionally, the health component reduces and prevents the spread of communicable diseases through vaccination campaigns and awareness sessions on topics such as family planning, immunizations and winter-related diseases. IRD/Blumont’s 80 Community Health Volunteers (CHVs), who are present in all of the camp’s districts, conduct health assessments, increase awareness of available healthcare services, and promote health education. CHVs refer cases to healthcare providers inside the camp through direct coordination, distribute health-related non-food items (NFIs), and operate oral rehydration corners in the camp’s clinics to provide oral rehydration treatment for children. Priority health cases include pre-natal, post-natal and new-born care, reproductive health, malnutrition, cerebral palsy, immunization and communicable diseases.

The community mobilization component of CBSR IV supports the development and empowerment of the Syrian community in Za’atari camp. The team of community mobilizers and Syrian Outreach Volunteers (SOVs) actively facilitate focus group discussions (FGDs), conduct outreach and disseminate information to support awareness campaigns and enhance refugee knowledge and access to information regarding camp operations, issues and services, among other things. The most pressing concerns and challenges identified through FGDs are then discussed during community gatherings (CGs), which act as a platform for dialogue between refugees and camp service providers. CGs represent one example of how CBSR IV strives to facilitate and develop self-management approaches, whereby refugees can engage in problem-solving and decision-making on behalf of their own communities, as well as provide suggestions and feedback on services provided.

The fourth major component in Za’atari camp is community engagement, which promotes community development, social cohesion and resilience through the provision of educational, recreational, cultural and social opportunities for Syrian refugees in IRD/Blumont’s community centers, service units and recreation fields. In line with CBSR IV’s commitment to promoting community self-management, the full management of these facilities is carried out by Syrian refugees who have been identified and selected through the Cash-for-Work (CFW) volunteer system. Furthermore, the community engagement component aims to provide opportunities for enhancing camp residents’ level of education, building transferable skills, and encouraging sustainable community initiatives. Through this component, IRD/Blumont offers a multitude of programs, including:

  • a Post-Basic Education program that consists of English, Arabic and computer skills courses;
  • a transferrable skills program that consists of tailoring, beauty/salon, and perfume and soap making courses; and
  • a recreational artsprogram consisting of art, photography and theater courses.

Furthermore, IRD/Blumont has had great success implementing the These Inspiring Girls Enjoy Reading (TIGER) program, which has improved the literacy skills of over 120 adolescent girls living in Za’atari camp.

CBSR IV also provides maintenance and distributes gas through the maintenance team to both Za’atari and KAP camps; these efforts provide fuel for communal kitchens as well as heat during the winter months. The maintenance team conducts regular maintenance and development of IRD/Blumont’s community centers, sports fields, and service units, and sprays pesticides to prevent insects and infestations.