Advocacy Toolkit: Better care services for unaccompanied and separated migrant children in Europe
Refugee and migrant children often live in detention centres or in big refugee camps, with no possibility to interact with the local community or attend school. Institutional care is too often used over other forms of care such as family or community-based care, despite the fact that it is recognised as having severe negative effects on children’s physical, cognitive and emotional development, and is not cost effective in the long term.
The provision of appropriate care adapted to the needs of unaccompanied and separated migrant children is essential for their well-being, protection and development. As such, Eurochild has drafted an advocacy toolkit as part of the EU project FORUM FOR Unaccompanied Minors: transfer of knowledge for professionals to increase foster care, coordinated by Fondazione l’Albero della Vita, a member of Eurochild.
The purpose of this toolkit is to assist child rights advocates and other professionals in influencing the governments at national and sub-national level, to promote the development of better care services for unaccompanied and separated migrant children in the EU.
This toolkit aims to:
- Provide an overview of the EU context, current policies and funding in the area of (children’s) migration
and care services
- Identify the current state of discussions around the rights of migrant children and key messages
- Offer tips and tools for building an effective advocacy strategy
- Promote child participation in advocacy around decisions that affect children
The EU- funded project Forum for Unaccompanied Minors: transfer of knowledge for professionals to increase foster care aims to expand national systems of family-based care for the reception of unaccompanied migrant children, partnering with organisations in Italy, Spain, Austria, Slovenia, Hungary and the Czech Republic.
However, this toolkit can be equally used by actors working in the field of children’s rights and migration in other countries.