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UNICEF Social Inclusion, Policy and Budgeting

UNICEF in action


The following publications and links include lessons-learned, models and helpful information on migration from around the world.

Central and Eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States

The Impact of Migration and Remittances on Communities, Families and Children in Moldova report is based on data from a sociological study on migration in Moldova. Data for the sociological study were collected in October and November 2006 in seven communities using focus group discussions with the spouses of migrants and with the guardians, teachers and parents of migrants; case studies, in-depth interviews of local leaders and children with parents working abroad were carried out based on semi-structured questionnaires for households, children of migrants and the communities. The main objectives of the study were to identify the impact of migration and remittances on communities, families and children.

The Impact of Parental Deprivation on the Development of Children Left Behind by Moldovan Migrants is a working paper reporting on vulnerable children – especially those deprived of parental care.  This group constitutes a specific risk, yet until recently, the magnitude of this issue was underestimated in Moldova. This survey seeks to assess to what extent children and their caregivers understand the significance of parental deprivation and to what extent they share an awareness of the levels of deprivation children face.

East Asia and the Pacific

Increasing the Impact of Remittances on Children’s Rights uses a human rights approach to study how remittances could have greater impact on children rights realization and looks at the relationship between migration-remittances and children rights realization for a clearer understanding of the challenges to reach greater respect, protection and realization of children rights.

Eastern and Southern Africa
During the heavy conflict in Angola, nearly 1 million children died. For the children that survived, violence took a heavy toll on their psychological and social well-being. More than 100,000 children became orphaned or separated from their families. Linked to the end of the hostilities, the movement of people and the repatriation of Angolan refugees make children even more vulnerable to exploitation and abuse. Read about migration and child protection on the country website.

South Africa
For Better Implementation of Migrant Children’s Rights in South Africa outlines the situation facing children who migrate across international borders to South Africa. There is lack of capacity for intervention with migrant children in South Africa. Many of the migrant rights organizations that exist do not specifically address the rights of children and many children's organizations lack the knowledge on migrant children's rights to intervene effectively. Access to rights is almost entirely facilitated by NGOs in South Africa with migrant children having very limited direct access to government departments and services. This report makes recommendations for intervention by the UN and partners for strengthening migrant children's access to basic rights in South Africa.

Latin America and the Caribbean

The Impact of Migration on Children in the Caribbean outlines a number of issues and risks that migration poses to families in the Caribbean, particularly to the children left behind and migrating children, whether with their parent(s) or unaccompanied. The impact of parental migration on children can be devastating as it threatens the long-term well-being and development of Caribbean adolescents into adulthood. Children affected by migration face several challenges in terms of education and health care as well as various psychosocial problems. The study concludes that issues such as human rights, integration, stability and social security should be given consideration in the articulation of policies to foster human development of migrant workers and their children.

The Impact of International Migration: Children Left Behind in Selected Countries of Latin America and the Caribbean aims to arrive at a better understanding of the impact of migration on children and families left behind in five countries in region (Mexico, Nicaragua, Ecuador, Jamaica and Haiti). The emotional impact of migration on children has been given scant attention in analyses and discussions on the topic. This paper reviews existing documentation on erosion of family structures and relationships, psychological distress, adoption of risky behaviour and increased vulnerability to violence, abuse and exploitation. These issues illustrate the importance of designing public policies both in countries of origin and receiving countries to address the impact of migration on child welfare. However, there are a number of gaps in knowledge and data, and more work needs to be done to fully understand the impact of migration on children to better guide public policy.

Middle East and North Africa

Impact social des transferts des Marocains résidant à l’étranger: Une revue de littérature reviews the main publications on the social impact of the remittances on women and children in Morocco, comparing them with the international theoretical and empirical literature. The areas for which the impacts are studied are poverty, education, access to safe drinking water and sanitation, nutrition and health, access to information and the media, and gender. It will be a matter of reporting all of their contributions and limitations of the various texts studied, both in terms of methodological and theoretical approaches and in terms of results and policy recommendations.



Documents and publications

Country and regional highlights