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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

UNICEF Innocenti's curated library of COVID-19 + Children research

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1 - 15 of 78
Effects of occupational therapy via telerehabilitation on occupational balance, well-being, intrinsic motivation and quality of life in Syrian refugee children in COVID-19 lockdown: a randomized controlled trial

AUTHOR(S)
Sümeyye Belhan Çelik; Esma Özkan; Gonca Bumin

Published: April 2022   Journal: Children
This study aimed to evaluate the effects of an occupational training program via telerehabilitation on well-being (WB), occupational balance (OB), intrinsic motivation (IM), and quality of life (QoL) in Syrian refugee children resettled in Turkey during the COVID-19 pandemic. This was a single-center, prospective, randomized, non-blinded trial in which children aged 13–15 years and attending a secondary school were recruited. OB, WB, IM, and QoL were evaluated via the OB Questionnaire (OBQ11), the Well-Star Scale (WSS), the IM Scale (IMS), and the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory (PedsQL). The intervention group attended online occupational therapy classes. Online classes were carried out as five sessions per week, each session lasting 1 h, for 3 weeks. Questionnaires were performed at the outset of the study and following the training program. Overall, 52 refugee children were randomized into the intervention and control groups, each including 26 children. The mean OBQ11, WSS, IMS, and PedsQL scores significantly improved more in the intervention group than in the control group. This was the first study investigating the effects of a customized online training course on OB, WB, IM, and QoL in Syrian refugee children, also affected unfavorably by the COVID-19 lockdown.
Examination of PTSD and depression levels and demographic data of Syrian refugee children during the pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Elif Erol; Dilara Demirpençe Seçinti

Published: April 2022   Journal: Psych
Background: The worldwide population of child refugees is estimated to be over 10 million. Refugee children and adolescents are among the most vulnerable groups in the world, and the pandemic created new challenges for them. Objective: This study aimed to examine the PTSD and depression levels of Syrian refugee children and adolescents, the difficulties they experienced in access to food and education, and the changes in their family income, and evaluate the effects of these factors on symptom severities of depression and PTSD. It used data obtained from 631 Syrian refugee children between the ages of 7 and 15. Assessment measures for exposure to PTSD and depression included a socio-demographic form, stressors related to COVID-19, the Child and Adolescent Trauma Survey (CATS), and the patient-rated Children’s Depression Inventory (CDI). ANCOVA is conducted to evaluate the differences between the symptoms of PTSD and depression. The regression analysis was used to determine the relationship between the scales and the demographic data.
“I wish every day was Saturday”: Newcomer youth and program facilitators’ experiences of a community-based resettlement program during the COVID-19 pandemic in Montreal

AUTHOR(S)
Emilia Gonzalez; Mónica Ruiz-Casares

Published: April 2022   Journal: International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education
During the COVID-19 pandemic, many crucial services for youth shifted to online delivery. Yet, little is known about the processes of providing online support to newcomer youth from the perspective of the service users. Say Ça! is a community-based organization in Montreal that supports newcomer youth through language tutoring and cultural activities. Photo journals by six newcomer 12–17-year-olds and group interviews with 11 program facilitators explored how the pandemic affected the youth’s experiences participating in Say Ça!. Findings highlight key elements of online learning program delivery essential to the youth’s engagement during the pandemic
Adolescent lives in Jordan: what are we learning from longitudinal evidence? Lessons from longitudinal research with adolescents
Institution: Gender and Adolescence Global Evidence
Published: March 2022

Jordan is a small, highly resource-constrained country situated in the heart of the Middle East. Long a haven for refugees fleeing regional conflict, over one-third of Jordan’s 10 million residents are not Jordanian. Jordan is home to approximately 1.5 million Syrians, half of whom are registered as refugees with UNHCR. Jordan is also hosting 2.5 million registered Palestine refugees. In Jordan, GAGE has collected mixed-methods baseline data (between mid-2018 and early 2019) with approximately 4,000 Syrian, Palestinian, Jordanian and Dom adolescents living in host communities, formal refugee camps and informal tented settlements; fielded three rounds of covid-19 phone surveys; and is running ongoing participatory research groups with older married girls, out-of-school boys and adolescent girls and boys with disabilities (15–19 years). GAGE is also evaluating a variety of UNICEF Jordan’s programming. This brief highlights headline emerging findings and provides links to fuller publications.

Adolescent lives in Lebanon: what are we learning from participatory evidence? Lessons from participatory research with adolescents
Institution: Gender and Adolescence Global Evidence
Published: March 2022

Since 2019, Lebanon’s economy has been caught in an accelerating downward spiral, which the World Bank predicts will rank in the top three most severe global economic crises in the last 150 years. Food prices have now climbed more than 500%, over half of the country is living below the poverty line and the electrical grid is on the verge of collapse as fuel has become unavailable. For the 1.5 million Syrian refugees and nearly 200,000 Palestinian refugees living in Lebanon, the situation is even more dire. In Lebanon, GAGE is running participatory research groups with 83 vulnerable Syrian, Palestinian and Lebanese adolescents. These young people are between the ages of 15 and 19 and live in host communities, formal refugee camps served by UNRWA (Palestinians), and informal tented settlements  (Syrians). The participatory research groups were established in 2019 and meet every four to six weeks  to discuss themes related to GAGE’s conceptual framework. This brief highlights headline emerging findings and provides links to fuller publications.

Adolescent lives in Cox’s Bazar: what are we learning from longitudinal evidence? Lessons from longitudinal research with adolescents
Institution: Gender and Adolescence Global Evidence
Published: March 2022

From August 2017, the largest wave of Rohingya refugees crossed the Myanmar border into Bangladesh, fleeing crimes that the UN Special Rapporteur has claimed ‘bear the hallmarks of genocide’. Over 880,000 displaced Rohingya now live in 32 makeshift and 2 registered refugee camps in Cox’s Bazar district, one of Bangladesh’s poorest regions, where 1.36 million people – comprising both refugees and host community residents – remain in need of humanitarian assistance. This brief draws on mixed-methods data collected both before and after the onset of the covid-19 pandemic. Drawing on quantitative and qualitative data from younger (aged 10–14) and older (aged 15–19) cohorts at baseline, our research captures the voices of Rohingya and Bangladeshi adolescents and their views on everyday life, including the structural and socio-cultural constraints they face and whether they are being left behind.

COVID-19: operational guidance for migrant & displaced children
Institution: Save the Children
Published: March 2022

COVID-19’s rapid spread poses particular challenges for vulnerable populations, especially migrants and displaced (M&D) children. It is apparent that certain characteristics of displaced populations such as higher risk of contagion, high mobility, and being difficult to reach, present suitable conditions for a rapid outbreak of COVID-19 – at huge risk to M&D children and to the surrounding communities. It is clear that the cost of not prioritising M&D populations is likely to be catastrophic. Save the Children’s Programme Framework explicitly recognises the acute vulnerability of migrant and displaced communities and suggests a number of possible programmatic interventions. This paper, developed by the TWG on Protecting the Rights of M&D Children, the MDI and Geneva Advocacy office, aims to provide further complementary analysis, suggested text for proposal and project design, and technical guidance to SC colleagues.

I was not safe in his house: The COVID-19 pandemic and violence against refugee and migrant girls and women in Italy
Institution: *UNICEF, Washington University in St. Louis
Published: March 2022

This research explored the specific impacts of the pandemic on exposure to gender based violence risks among refugee and migrant girls and women in Italy. The research focused on refugee and migrant girls and women because of the intersectionality of vulnerabilities related to their gender and their migration status. It examined the availability and accessibility of gender based violence service provision over the course of the pandemic, and explored how services adapted in the face of this health emergency.

“We could see our real selves:” The COVID-19 syndemic and the transition to telehealth for a school-based prevention program for newcomer Latinx immigrant youth

AUTHOR(S)
William Martinez; Sita G. Patel; Stephanie Contreras (et al.)

Published: February 2022   Journal: Journal of Community Psychology
Newcomer Latinx immigrant youths in the United States are currently in a syndemic of increased risk of behavioral health concerns, disparities in access to related services, and are disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. This study used qualitative inquiry to examine the impact that the transition to telehealth had on a school-based group prevention program for immigrant youth, Fuerte, within the context of this syndemic. Data included semi-structured interviews with group leaders, and focus groups with youth program participants. Themes indicated both positive and negative impacts of the transition to telehealth on program component implementation, youth participant engagement, and youth participant social connectedness. Despite the telehealth model, youth participants reported that they felt socially connected to each other through the program
Immigrant family financial and relationship stress from the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Catherine A. Solheim; Jaime Ballard; Nusroon Fatiha (et al.)

Published: February 2022   Journal: Journal of Family and Economic Issues
Immigrant families are some of the most vulnerable to the effects of this continuing crisis. This study examined the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on immigrant families in an upper Midwest state. 1t interviewed 19 human and social service providers from agencies serving Somali, Latinx, and Karen (refugees from Burma/Myanmar) immigrant families between June and August 2020. Results analyzed for this paper focused on responses to questions asked about COVID-19-related financial and familial stress, and coping resources and constraints that providers were observing with their immigrant clients.
Word of mouth from left-behind children in rural China: exploring their psychological, academic and physical well-being during COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Chunhai Gao; Endale Tadesse; Sabika Khalid (et al.)

Published: February 2022   Journal: Child Indicators Research
COVID-19 has had considerable effects on people’s lives worldwide, particularly left-behind children in China as they tragically witnessed the outbreak. From the outset, millions of left-behind children in rural areas experienced extensive physical and psychological disturbances because their migrant parents who lived in the city or another province could not be with them. This study explored the psychological, academic, and physical well-being of rural left-behind children during COVID-19. It captured the experiences of 10- to 15-year-old children and adolescents who were left behind by their migrant parents before the COVID-19 outbreak.
Intersecting disadvantages for married adolescents: life after marriage pre- and post-COVID-19 in contexts of displacement

AUTHOR(S)
Sarah Baird; Maureen Murphy; Jennifer Seager (et al.)

Published: February 2022   Journal: Journal of Adolescent Health
Although there is a growing evidence base on the drivers of child marriage, comparatively little is known about the experiences of married girls in refugee settings and how their development trajectories diverge from those of their nonmarried peers, particularly in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. Drawing on cross-national panel data from Bangladesh and Jordan, this article explores diversity in child marriage experiences in contexts affected by forced displacement, highlighting how married girls’ well-being differs from that of their unmarried peers, and how COVID-19 has reinforced these differences.
The Syrian refugee life study: first glance

AUTHOR(S)
Edward A. Miguel; Bailey Palmer; Sandra Rozo Villarraga (et al.)

Published: February 2022
This paper presents descriptive statistics from the first wave of the Syrian Refugee Life Study (S-RLS), which was launched in 2020. S-RLS is a longitudinal study that tracks a representative sample of 2,500 registered Syrian refugee households in Jordan. It collects comprehensive data on socio-demographic variables as well as information on health and well-being, preferences, social capital, attitudes, and safety and crime perceptions. This study uses these novel data to document the socio-demographic characteristics of Syrian refugees in Jordan, and compare them to those of the representative Jordanian and non-Jordanian populations interviewed in the 2016 Jordan Labor Market Panel Survey. The findings point to lags in basic service access, housing quality, and educational attainment for the Syrian refugee population, relative to the non-refugee population. The impacts of the pandemic may serve to partially explain these documented disparities. The data also illustrate that most Syrian refugees have not recovered economically from the shock of COVID-19 and that this population has larger gender disparities in terms of income, employment, prevalence of child marriage, and gender attitudes than their non-refugee counterparts. Finally, mental health problems are common for Syrian refugees in 2020, with depression indicated among over 61 percent of the population.
Education and an ethics of care when working with refugee families during COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Anne Keary; Andrea Reupert; Mervi Kaukko (et al.)

Published: February 2022   Journal: Early Years
Provision of early childhood education and care services for refugee families took on heightened challenges during COVID-19 restrictions. This study undertook a small-scale study to explore how Australian educators worked with and cared for refugee families during the COVID-19 outbreak in an urban Australian setting. This study emerges from a larger project that aimed to support social inclusion and cultural and linguistic diversity for refugee families in Australia. It draws on two group interviews conducted during a COVID-19 lockdown with four educators working with refugee families in early childhood education and care. Data analysis is framed by the ethics of care work of Carol Gilligan and Nel Noddings. On the basis of these theories and the interview data, two vignettes on an ethics of care were developed. The importance of being cared for and cared about and genuinely listening were identified as crucial aspects of the care provided to refugee children and their families.
Tackling digital exclusion among disadvantaged adolescents in Jordan: what difference does access to devices and online platforms make?

AUTHOR(S)
Nicola Jones; Taghreed Alabadi; Sarah Alheiwidi (et al.)

Institution: Gender and Adolescence Global Evidence
Published: January 2022

Recognition that access to digital connectivity, tools and services is fundamental to inclusion and participation in society has grown exponentially over the last five years, including for persons affected by forced displacement and socially disadvantaged young people. This report presents findings from a rapid qualitative research assessment of UNICEF Jordan’s digital inclusion programme for vulnerable Jordanians, Palestinian and Syrian refugees attending Makani centres undertaken in July and August 2021. The programme distributed tablets and 10GB of monthly data to 10,000 vulnerable households in order to help address the digital divide and support access to online education and learning as well to life skills and other non-formal education programming. Drawing on in-depth interviews and focus group discussions with adolescents and their parents, this report explores the effects that the tablet distribution initiative has had in terms of education and learning, access to information and services, as well as to peers and mentors.

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UNICEF Innocenti's Children and COVID-19 Library is a database collecting research from around the world on COVID-19 and its impacts on children and adolescents.

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COVID-19 & Children: Rapid Research Response

UNICEF Innocenti is mobilizing a rapid research response in line with UNICEF’s global response to the COVID-19 crisis. The initiatives we’ve begun will provide the broad range of evidence needed to inform our work to scale up rapid assessment, develop urgent mitigating strategies in programming and advocacy, and preparation of interventions to respond to the medium and longer-term consequences of the COVID-19 crisis. The research projects cover a rapid review of evidence, education analysis, and social and economic policies.