Refugee and migrant crisis in Europe
In 2018, UNICEF and partners plan for:
children benefitting from quality child protection services in Greece, Italy, Serbia, Bulgaria and Germany
children enrolled in formal and non-formal education in Greece, Italy, Serbia and Bulgaria
people accessing gender-based violence services, including referral, prevention and training in Greece, Italy and Bulgaria
2018 Requirements: US$33,144,000
Children on the move face a range of risks, lack protection and fall through the cracks during their desperate journeys through countries of origin, transit, arrival and return. Some 164,000 refugees and migrants, including 29,000 children, entered Europe in 2017, joining the 1.4 million people, including 360,000 children, who arrived in 2015-2016, and the 3.6 million people, including 1.2 million children, already hosted in Turkey.3 The Central Mediterranean was the most used route in 2017, with spikes of arrivals in the Eastern Mediterranean in the fall. Amid this fluid situation, additional routes through the Western Mediterranean and the Black Sea also re-emerged. Although protection systems have improved and social inclusion has progressed with increasing access to education, major gaps remain. Key challenges include the poor reception conditions, child migration detention and persistent discrimination against refugees and migrants. Many children are still unable to pursue education or access basic services. In Bulgaria, Greece and Serbia, more than 20,000 stranded children remain in limbo, and in Italy, 90 per cent of arriving children are unaccompanied and/or separated.4 A continuum of care and protection is needed for children on the move, throughout their journeys, given the long-term impact that this experience will have on their lives.
2018 programme targets
- 5,000 children benefitting from quality child protection services
- 2,580 people accessing GBV services, including referral, prevention and training
- 10,500 children enrolled in formal and non-formal education
- 6,800 children benefitting from quality child protection services
- 1,900 front-line workers trained on child protection and GBV
- 2,600 children participating in formal and non-formal educational activities
- 3,000 children benefitting from quality child protection services
- 1,600 children participating in formal and non-formal educational activities
- 4,000 children received basic supplies (including clothing and baby hygiene items)
- 1,000 children under 5 accessing mother and baby care centres, including nutrition services
- 300 children benefitting from quality child protection services
- 200 people accessing GBV services including referral, prevention and training
- 600 children participating in non-formal educational activities
- 10,000 children benefitting from quality child protection standards
- 2,500 front-line workers trained on child protection standards
Rapid reaction support
- 75 per cent of children receiving cross-sectoral rapid reaction support in contingency interventions to respond to sudden influxes
In 2018, UNICEF will respond to the needs of children and women on the move, stranded, pushed back5 and seeking asylum in Europe.6 A two-pronged approach will combine life-saving humanitarian service delivery with capacity building, policy reform and technical assistance. UNICEF will continue to use mobile outreach to identify and refer at-risk children to relevant services, including psychosocial support. Government institutions will be supported to ensure protective guardianship, foster care, alternatives to detention, and regular and safe passage opportunities. Programming focused on the prevention of and response to gender-based violence (GBV) will be scaled up. Education and life-skills development will remain a pillar of the response and a tool for advancing the social inclusion of children. UNICEF will also provide essential items and carry out activities in early childhood development, health, nutrition and child rights monitoring. Cross-sectoral contingency capacity will be maintained to facilitate an immediate response to any emerging situations.7 Using a multi-regional and inter-agency approach, UNICEF will increase coordination and programming with countries of origin, transit and return to promote and protect the rights of refugee and migrant children.
Results from 2017
By 31 October 2017, UNICEF had US$34 million available against the US$43 million appeal (78 per cent funded).8 Since the start of the response in 2015, UNICEF has provided 261,000 refugee and migrant children with a range of services. In 2017, UNICEF used outreach teams to increase the identification and referral of at-risk children, reaching more than 15,300 children. An additional 9,800 children benefitted from psychosocial and community-based child protection support. More than 4,600 front-line workers in temporary care facilities for unaccompanied and separated children and reception and asylum centres across the region received training on child protection standards.9 UNICEF, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and non-governmental organizations developed the roadmap 'The Way Forward to Strengthened Policies and Practices for Unaccompanied and Separated Children in Europe' to support Member States to reinforce related protection systems. More than 8,700 children aged 6 to 17 years participated in UNICEF-supported structured non-formal education activities. UNICEF policy support and technical assistance contributed to the inclusion of some 6,000 children in formal education. UNICEF and children ombudspersons mobilized partners to monitor the rights of refugee and migrant children. Joint communication and advocacy conducted with UNICEF National Committees raised awareness of the situation of refugee and migrant children and supported their social inclusion.
UNICEF is requesting US$53,399,000 to meet the needs of refugee and migrant children in Europe in 2018-2019. Inadequate funding will hinder the effort to eradicate the abuse that children are exposed to, and undermine their inclusion and access to basic services. The response will focus on key interventions that support children in the most concerned countries. To adapt to evolving and emerging situations, UNICEF is requesting flexible funding and including rapid reaction support. In line with UNICEF's multi-regional approach, these requirements complement those outlined in the Humanitarian Action for Children appeals for Syrian refugees,10 the West and Central Africa region, and the Middle East and North Africa region.
Requirements by sector
1 This aligns with the number of refugees and migrants to be provided with assistance in Bulgaria, Germany, Greece, Italy and Serbia in 2018, prioritizing the most vulnerable new arrivals, as well as those already in Europe.
2 This figure is based on the proportion of new child arrivals and the estimated number of children already in Europe.
3 These figures cover the first 10 months of 2017. Sources: United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, 'Operational Portal Refugee Situations – Mediterranean Situation', UNHCR, available at: https://data2.unhcr.org/en/situations/mediterranean, accessed 5 December 2017; United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, 'UNHCR Turkey: Key Facts and Figures', UNHCR, October 2017, available at: https://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/UNHCRTurkey-KeyFactsandFigures-October2017Snapshot_0.pdf, accessed 5 December 2017.
4 United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, United Nations Children's Fund and International Organization for Migration, 'Refugee and Migrant Children in Europe: Accompanied, Unaccompanied and Separated Mid year Overview of Trends January-June 2017', UNHCR, UNICEF and IOM, October 2017, available at: www.unicef.org/eca/inter_fact.pdf, accessed 5 December 2017.
5 Push back occurs when refugees and migrants, including children, are sent back to the country of transit that they were trying to leave after they cross the border.
6 The response will focus on refugee and migrant children in Bulgaria, Germany, Greece, Italy and Serbia.
7 Rapid reaction support comprises a 90-day comprehensive package of services in the following areas: ch ild protection (psychosocial support, identification and referral of at-risk children and child-friendly spaces); GBV (identification, referral and training); non-formal education; provision of non-food items; health and nutrition (immunization, mother and baby corners and infant and young child feeding); hygiene and sanitation; child rights monitoring; communication and advocacy; and coordination (emergency human resources, coordination and information management). Technical support will also be provided and coordinated at the regional level.
8 Available funds include US$17.9 million raised against the current appeal and US$16.1 million carried forward from the previous year.
9 Front-line workers include reception centre managers, social workers, health professionals and border police forces, among others.
10 Through regional technical support, UNICEF efforts in Turkey will complement the response under the Regional Refugee and Resilience Plan.