in Europe



The project aims at improving the level of protection of, and decisions taken for, European unaccompanied minors victims of exploitation and/or trafficking, or at risk to be, in Europe through professional exchanges, monitoring, research, awareness raising, collection and dissemination of best practices in countries of origin and destination in Europe.
A Monitoring of the return procedure of European unaccompanied minors from countries of destination to countries of origin will be undertaken throughout the 18 months of implementation of the project in order to identify gaps in procedures of return of Romanian and Bulgarian unaccompanied minors and to promote alternatives in accordance with the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.
An international research published at the end of the project will analyse the data gathered throughout the monitoring process and will provide an in-depth view on the gaps and good practices in return procedures while interpreting the compliance of those and the national legislation as well as bi-lateral return agreements with international instruments and EU law. The analysis will be made through the prism of the EU directive on the rights of citizens of the EU to move and reside freely in the territory of Member States and the EU anti trafficking directive.
The awareness of national authorities and NGOs on the gaps and good practices in the return procedure will therefore be increased allowing a better planning and management of the cases of EU unaccompanied minors at risk of exploitation and/or trafficking, as identified by project partners.
The project will also foster the sharing of experience at transnational level with professionals in child protection and judicial authorities meeting their counterparts from countries of origin/destination during multidisciplinary events. This strengthening of the links between those professionals – ensured not only during an exchange meeting but also throughout the project – will enable exchange of information between judicial authorities and child protection professionals from different countries and cooperation in finding durable solutions in the best interests of the child.
The collaboration between stakeholders in countries of origin and destination will this way be improved and the experience sharing meeting organized will draw the lessons learned of this year of facilitated cooperation. A working document on a standardized procedure of collaboration will be designed and promoted at this occasion.
The dissemination of the results of both the project and the study as well as a final conference will be organized, in order to promote and contribute to harmonized national and European responses to the protection of EU unaccompanied minors at risk of exploitation and/or trafficking through identified good practices and methods of collaboration.
The knowledge of European decision makers on the good practices and gaps in protection of EU unaccompanied minors will therefore be increased while a joint manifesto agreed upon by participants will be issued.
The project has been co-financed by the European Commission’s Criminal Justice program.