Supporting autonomy of un-accompanied children: Launching INTEGRA Network in Palermo!

7 May 2019 | News, Rights and Justice

How to foster the autonomy of un-accompanied minors and youth who are about to leave care system?

On the 29th April 2019 we officially launched INTEGRA Continuous Cooperation Network to intensify and expand a functional and efficient cooperation for supporting the autonomy processes of children and ageing-out youth from the residential centres.

We, all stakeholders, entities and individuals, who signed the protocol, strongly believe in collaboration, we agree that adopting a comprehensive approach could better support youth in autonomy processes. We are motivated and we want a world that is more equal, where everyone could express their full potential; could acquire new skills; where everyone could share and feel connected to others.

We know that the transition to adulthood is not easy for anyone, and that young refugees and migrants are among the most vulnerable categories. As soon as children reach 18 years old, they lose the protection covered by international instruments, they no longer have access to the same rights and the same opportunities and support in many areas, including social assistance, education, health and psychosocial care, recreational activities, accommodation, information on administrative procedures and other services.

Acknowledging the difficulties that young migrants and refugees face, on the 24th April the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe approved the first Recommendation CM/Rec(2019)4 to member States on supporting young refugees in transition to adulthood. It encourages member states to promote and apply measures aimed at ensuring that young refugees receive additional temporary support after the age of 18 to enable them to access their rights, and at recognising and strengthening the role of youth sector in promoting better access to these rights. It also recommends to foster comprehensive interdisciplinary co-operation between institutions in areas such as child protection, youth, health, education, social protection or welfare, migration, justice and gender equality.

We weren’t aware of the intentions of the Council of Europe, and here in Palermo we have already activated some of the recommendations!

The INTEGRA network connects residential care providers, educators, successful care leavers, VET providers, educational institutions, local authorities working with migrants, guardians of un-accompanied minors and provides favourable settings for effective exchange of information about opportunities for un-accompanied minors and youth in Palermo and not only.

The network is open to everyone, if you would like to join us and expand further the cooperation.

About the project

INTEGRA – Multidisciplinary Mentorship program to support the entrepreneurship of children in care and young care-leavers is co-funded by the Rights, Equality and Citizenship Programme of the European Commission.

The INTEGRA approach envisions a personalised participatory framework, where the stakeholders take the role of guiding, connecting, mediating and supporting the children in the restoration process of new reference points for their future socio-economic inclusion as a persona integra into the community.

For further information

Read more about INTEGRA.

Follow #INTEGRAeu, be updated on the developments of the project and share your ideas about the transition to adulthood of unaccompanied minors or contact Ruta Grigaliunaite: ruta.grigaliunaite@cesie.org  if you would like to be involved in the activities of the project.