Home Institution

Bates College

Publication Date

Fall 2015

Program Name

Jordan: Health and Community Development


The purpose of this research was to understand how refugee and Jordanian adolescents perceive safety by answering the following three questions: 1) How do adolescents in host communities define safety? 2) How do they perceive the safety of their community? 3) What is being done, within their communities, to address the safety needs of adolescents? By answering these questions, this research aimed to increase the understanding of how safety should be defined, assessed, and addressed in regards to adolescents living in Jordanian host communities. Due to resources limitations, this research was only conducted with Syrian adolescents refugees. Four interviews were conducted at a housing community in Baqa’a and twenty surveys were conducted in a housing community run by Al Takaful Charity in Ramtha. This research resulted in a number of findings regarding participants’ experiences of safety within their community. The most notable are: many participants had poor access to extracurricular programming, felt unsafe in their community or felt that their community was divided, and had little knowledge of or confidence in conflict prevention and resolution programs in their community. Additionally, while all participants gave a definition of safety that was focused on freedom from danger and and safe access to basic resources, a majority of participants agreed that social cohesion was a component of safety. This finding suggest that further research should be done to gain a better understanding of the role that social cohesion plays in individuals perceptions of safety and to determine whether a more comprehensive definition of safety needs to be use in safety and protection assessments conducted by humanitarian agencies working with adolescents in Jordan.


Community-Based Research | Demography, Population, and Ecology | Mental and Social Health | Near and Middle Eastern Studies | Place and Environment | Public Health | Service Learning | Sociology | Sociology of Culture

Article Location