Research Article  |   May 2019
Exploration of Occupational Deprivation Among Syrian Refugees Displaced in Jordan
Author Affiliations
  • Wesam B. Darawsheh, PhD, MSc, BSc, is Associate Professor, Department of Occupational Therapy, School of Rehabilitation Sciences, The University of Jordan, Amman, Jordan; w.darawsheh@ju.edu.jo
Article Information
Community Mobility and Driving / Health and Wellness / Rehabilitation, Participation, and Disability / Research Articles
Research Article   |   May 2019
Exploration of Occupational Deprivation Among Syrian Refugees Displaced in Jordan
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, May 2019, Vol. 73, 7304205030p1-7304205030p9. doi:10.5014/ajot.2019.030460
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, May 2019, Vol. 73, 7304205030p1-7304205030p9. doi:10.5014/ajot.2019.030460
Abstract

Importance: Research is needed to situate occupational deprivation (OD) within each unique refugee population and displacement context.

Objective: To explore the way refugees manage their day-to-day lives within the limits of displacement contexts in Jordan.

Design: A grounded theorizing approach was used. Sampling methods used were convenience sampling, purposive sampling, snowball sampling, and theoretical sampling. Data were collected through semistructured interviews.

Setting: Inside and outside the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan.

Participants: Forty-nine adult Syrian refugees (19 women, 30 men; mean age = 34.6 yr) who fled to Jordan after the war in Syria began in 2011. Twenty-four lived outside the refugee camps, and 25 lived inside Zaatari camp. Written consent was required before participation.

Outcomes and Measures: Participants’ unique experiences were targeted to generate a theory to facilitate understanding of the effects of displacement on participation in meaningful occupations. A topic guide was designed, and the questions included served as pointers for the interviewers.

Results: Syrian refugees experienced OD, which had negative effects on their health, well-being, and sense of humanity.

Conclusions and Relevance: Further research studies are required to investigate the influence of sociocultural differences on the meaning and consequences of OD. Contextual factors and living difficulties associated with OD need to be further explored.

What This Article Adds: OD is a concept with sociocultural connotations. The meaning of OD needs to be conceptualized for each unique refugee population and displacement context. Displacement contexts need to provide a repertoire of socioculturally meaningful occupations to counteract OD. Occupational therapy needs to assume a leading role in the design and delivery of programs directed to fulfill refugees’ occupational needs.