The Study of Adolescent Lives after Migration to America (SALaMA) is a mixed-methods study that is conducted by Washington University in St. Louis and Qatar Foundation International (QFI) in partnership with a number of school districts and local refugee resettlement agencies around the country. It seeks to assess the mental health and psychosocial wellbeing of Arabic speaking high school students who have been – or whose parents have been – resettled to the US from the MENA region. It also aims to identify the sources of daily stress in these students’ lives, as well as the corresponding support mechanisms available to them. The study findings are being used by QFI and others to design future programming efforts in the US and beyond.  This study is now underway in Ireland with Maynooth University.

More information, including publications, can be found here:

SALaMA developed the EMPOWerment and rEsilience pRogram (EMPOWER) which facilitates how to successfully navigate and address the taboo/stigma around mental health in Arab/Muslim communities. The program identifies critical supports and services to help students better transition and thrive in the United States.

This guide provides detailed instruction on how to conduct the EMPOWER program.

In conjunction with this study the SALaMA team created the Forward With Peers Facilitation Guide.

FORWARD with Peers (FWP) is a 10-week program. Building on the success of a school-based behavioral health program designed to help students talk about their feelings and promote healthy living, the goal is to create a safe place to promote social and emotional learning (SEL) and build students’ toolset to achieve their academic, professional, and personal goals.


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