Written for the European Programme for Integration and Migration (EPIM) – This document and the related convening were supported by the Fund ‘Never Alone – Building our future with children and youth arriving in Europe’ of the European Programme for Integration and Migration (EPIM), a collaborative initiative of the Network of European Foundations (NEF). The sole responsibility for the content of this publication lies with the author and the content may not necessarily reflect the positions of EPIM, NEF or EPIM’s Partner Foundations.
On 8 March 2019, key actors from 36 different Greek civil society organisations (CSOs), youth advocates, Greek government agencies and private foundations came together in Athens for the expert convening: “Building our Future with Children and Youth on the Move in Greece”, organised by EPIM. The convening aimed to explore the continued needs and opportunities for migrant children and youth to establish a future in Greece, and to share good practices and recommendations regarding their protection, identification and inclusion.
Throughout the day, the discussions among the 50 participants touched on a range of issues. Those highlighted in this report constitute the cross-cutting reflections, key messages and recommendations that participants shared during the convening, which they directed to practitioners, advocates, government agencies and private funders with the aim to ensure a future for children and youth on the move in Greece.
In summary, these recommendations are:
- Invest in the quality of long-term care schemes, mainly by developing and financially sustaining alternative care schemes, which include foster family care for younger children, and implementing semi-independent living schemes for youth.
- Ensure the timely implementation of the new guardianship law which addresses the know-how and lessons learned from CSOs currently running guardianship programmes.
- Adopt an inclusive gender-sensitive approach to care and establish legal pathways that protect those who report violent incidents.
- Support youth in the transition to adulthood by including this group in continued care projects and facilitating pathways to education, training and employment after 18.
- Provide mental health support integrated in all levels of services for children, youth as well as guardians, social workers, interpreters, and all actors working with children.
- Strengthen collaborative networks between civil society, advocates and government actors to address cross-cutting challenges and share information on latest developments.