Residence Palace (Passage Room), Rue de la Loi 155, Brussels
ChildMove: A Discussion on the Project Following Unaccompanied Young Refugees across Europe
Hanne Beirens, Acting Director, MPI Europe
Ilse Derluyn, Project Lead, ChildMove; and Professor, Department of Social Work and Social Pedagogy, Ghent University
Isabela Atanasiu, Legal Officer, Directorate-General for Migration and Home Affairs, European Commission
Valeria Setti, Coordinator for the Rights of the Child, European Commission
Catherine Woollard, Secretary General, European Council on Refugees and Exiles (ECRE)
David Lowyck, Director, Minor-Ndako
The Migration Policy Institute Europe and Ghent University held a discussion of vital new research into the experiences of young refugees and migrants who have travelled across Europe unaccompanied by their families.
Professor Derluyn presented the early results of ChildMove, a project funded by the European Research Council, before debating the implications with leading EU policymakers, NGOs, and practitioners.
Despite images of children in peril becoming a staple of the media during the migration crisis of 2015 and 2016, there is relatively little understanding of how these journeys affect their mental wellbeing. Without detailed research, policymakers face an uphill task to cater for the needs of such young people.
The ChildMove project is a unique attempt to fill this gap. The team is following young refugees and migrants as they travel from Libya and Turkey to Europe and beyond, allowing them to describe in their own words what it means to be on the move.