Minors, Migrants and Refugees: the Mediterranean and Central European Situation

Minors, Migrants and Refugees: the Mediterranean and Central European Situation

Daphne project: 2003-125

Daphne Programme – Year 2003

Final Report

Project NoJAI/DAP/03/125/Y


“Minors, migrants and refugees: the Mediterranean and Central European situation”

Start Date: End Date:

Co-ordinating Organisation’s name:Associació per a la Creació d’Estudis i Projectes Socials

Contact person:


Address: Boria 17, pral

Postal code: 08003



Tel. No: +34 933 194 750

Fax No:+34 933 195 813

e-mail: Website:

Partner Organisations’ names and countries:



1. Aims of the project

1.1 The problem addressed by the project;

As indicated in the project presented to the Commission, the three organisations that form the partnership (CEPS Projectes Socials, CAPAC and OMEGA) have identified groups of unaccompanied immigrant children living in the streets in cities in the countries (Spain, Austria and Italy) in which these organisations are based.

These minors,who come from countries bordering the European Union (the Maghreb, the Balkans and the former Soviet republics),are a vulnerable group exposed to the risk of exploitation and even violencein the absence of protection from adults and institutions. Furthermore, they do not always accept help from the protection system.

In addition,at local level there are differences in legislation, regulations and systems with regard to tackling the problem. There is potential for transferring and adapting the variety of responses and solutions to specific problems to other situations. In other words, the approaches and methods used may be applied to other contexts.

However, it has also been observed that the professionals and organisations concerned do not have updated reference frameworks or tools to tackle this issue effectively. Consequently, the main project approachhas been the exchange of knowledge between professionals from participating countries and between these professionals and the other EU Member States.

The aim of the project has therefore been to ascertain the conditions of unaccompanied immigrant minors, particularly those living in the streets of Barcelona, Graz and Milan. The main objective was to obtain an updated snapshot of their situation and to compare the strategies employed in the different cities in order to meet the needs and demands of this group.

1.2. Beneficiaries

End beneficiaries: minors who live or who have lived in the streets inBarcelona, Graz and Milan.

Other beneficiaries: minors in similar circumstances in Spain, Austria and Italy, since these countries all have similar legislative frameworks.

Also, minors in similar situations throughout the European Union, since the transnational nature of the project means that solutions can be transferred and adapted, as indicated earlier.

The other main groups targeted by the project were the organisations and/or professionals who will be able to draw onthe main results:

-Organisations and professionals working in the field of child care: social services, police, educators, experts and municipal authorities;

-Researchers and research institutions;

-Decision-making bodies at local, regional and national level;

-Lobbies and European networks specialising in this field of study;

-General public.

1.3. Expected results

The aim of the project is to publicise and promote debate on the problem described above.

To this end, we intended the findings to have an impact at various different levels:

  • at transnational level we hoped to develop a transnational methodology which would be applicable in different countries at present and in the future to study a local problem with wider global implications;
  • performance of three studies in three countries on the care ofminors living in the streets;
  • based on these studies, comparison of good practices and of the situation in each city and the drawing up of joint conclusions;
  • dissemination of the project findings to organisations and professionals from the countries concerned and the EU countries on the Internet and in a printed edition.

1.4. Prior conditions laid down by or recommendations made by the Commission

There were no prior conditions laid down by or recommendations made by the Commission.

2. Implementation of the project

2.1. Activities

The project action plan comprised the following activities:

  1. Preparation

Detailed methodology. Project analysis. Proposals for the document. Approval of action plan. Assessment of methodology and initial meeting. Internal report.

  1. Research development

Bibliographical search for existing studies. Analysis of data from different sources. Interview with officials from local and regional government. Meeting with NGOs and the authorities. Interview with minors. Follow-up of activities. Analysis of protection and integration methods. Evaluation of social impact. Analysis of first results. Assessment of methodology and 2nd phase objectives. Internal report.

  1. Consensus

First draft of conclusions. Analysis of results obtained. Drafting of final reports. Drafting of final document. Assessment of objectives and project procedures. Internal report.

  1. Dissemination.

Presentation meetings. Conference in Barcelonato present conclusions and proposals. Final assessment. Publication of project conclusions. Final report sentelectronically to 4200 addresses.

In general, the activities carried out were consistent with the action plan. However, three principal factors led to modifications in the activities outlined in the original plan.

The first modification concerned the change of venue for the opening meeting from Graz, Austria (Omega’s base) to Barcelona, the headquarters of CEPS Projectes Socials. It was easier for CEPS to hold the meeting in its offices because of its role as lead partner and the need to adequately present the initial action plan for the project as well as document the administrative procedures that would have to be carried out. This made it easier to organise the meeting early on in the project and ensure that it got off to a sound start.

The second modification related to the decision to hold the final project meeting before the publication of the accompanying documents. This was in order to give each country additional time to draft reports and to include new contributions that other experts might make in the final recommendations in the closing chapter of the publication.

The third change, in respect of the final publication, divided the work carried out by the individual partners into two areas: a study based on an outline drawn up and agreed during the first meeting in Barcelona and the joint drawing up of recommendations, which were subsequently included in the publicationas future challenges.

2.2. Participation of partners

CEPS Projectes Socials undertook the leadership and technical management of the four key deliverables of the project: website, seminars, final publication and dissemination and administrative coordination.

CEPS team members:

Xavier Puig, Project director;

Alex Rodríguez Quero, Researcher;

Laura Baseiria, Administrator.

Outside contractors

Raquel Prado (editing and coordinating translators)

Cristina Riera (website and administrative support)

Juan Pedregosa (website and administrative support)

OMEGA and CAPAC shared the tasks of conducting research in their respective countries, coordinating and, as agreed with CEPS, editing and drawing up recommendations.

Omega team members:

CAPAC team members:

Bait Miriam, Coordinator

Bait Sgarella-Faccoli-Soler, Researcher

Belgiovine, Administrator

3. Results and impacts of the project

The analysis of the assessment of the final questionnaire completed by the heads of the participating organisations is as follows.

-The project’s innovative character was highly valued by the partners. This aspect was also highlighted by the clear relation between the project's objectives and the identification of needs and opportunities defined in its specific content.

-In terms of management, it should be stated that the division of work and the timeframe were assessed favourably, with communication between partners a strong feature throughout the project. Other related aspects which achieved high satisfaction ratings include project development, fulfilment of the agenda and access to information. This demonstrates the suitability of the project structure and the good partner relations. Communication and access to information were considered particularly appropriate.

-The partners were satisfied with the achievement of the objectives, although Omega was not entirely confident that the main objectives had been met. The partners were conscious that local specificity and needs are core project aims. Omega did not believe that the project’s impact could be more wide-ranging.

-Needs are clearly identified in the project: targets are well defined and the persons involved have excellent professional profiles.

-Lastly, the project enabled partners to increase their understanding of the situation in other European countries and to build new relations with other local organisations. Clearly, the partners have considered the possibility of following up this project with new members from other countries, which might bring higher added value based on their own local experience.

4. Dissemination and follow-up

The main means used to disseminate the project were as follows:


Publication is the main means of disseminating the project. Some 1500 copies were published in two formats:

  • Publication of “Minors, migrants and refugees: the Mediterranean and Central Europe situation.”
  • DVD of seminars held on 2 July 2004.

4.1.2.Publication of “Minors, migrants and refugees; the Mediterranean and Central Europe situation.”

This work brings together the work carried out by all the partners throughout the project. It contains exactly the same information in English and in Spanish and comprises the following sections:

  1. Minors, people, migrants
  2. Minors, migrants and refugees: the situation in Barcelona
  3. Minors, migrants and refugees: the situation in Graz
  4. Minors, migrants and refugees: the situation in Milan
  5. Minors, migrants and refugees: challenges for the future.

Each of the chapters on the different cities includes an analysis of:

  • The city
  • The target group of the study
  • Legal system relating to the target group
  • Social intervention actions
  • Press reviews
  • Bibliography and web pages

4.1.3. DVD on seminars held on 2 July 2004

This DVD of the seminar on 2 July 2004is in both English and Spanish so that each speaker can be heard in the original language.

It should be noted that for logistical reasons related to publishing, the DVD was not completed until December. Consequently, information could not be properly dispatched and will not be channelled until January 2005.

Distribution will be as follows:

CEPS: 1100 copies, of which 600 will be dispatched;

OMEGA: 200 copies;

CAPAC: 200 copies.


The project website allows the information available to the general public to be accessed. Consequently, much of the information on the website has referred to the seminars. Since publication of the book, a PDF version can be consulted free of charge by interested members of the public.

The project website is Content is available in three languages: English, Spanish and Catalan.

It is planned to send the publication electronically to around 4200 organisations in Europe and Latin America. These organisations, which will receive specific information on the project, constitute CEPS’s customised database.


The annex contains a leaflet on the seminars held on 2 July 2004.

5. Conclusions

The purpose of the project “Minors, migrants and refugees: the Mediterranean and Central European situation” was to compare the lives of unaccompanied immigrant and refugee minors in Barcelona, Graz and Milan, study reception and integration strategies and identify excellent practices that can be transferred to other areas in the European Union.

To this end, the study of each city has provided detailed information on reception and integration mechanisms in various different fields (educational, social, housing, health and the labour market). These findings were examined against wider issues affecting different Member States that are related to immigration policies and child care. In the seminar on "CHILDREN/PEOPLE/MIGRANTS" on 2 July 2004, experts from different countries and disciplines were able to draw on their local expertise to discuss these wider issues, and this analysis was used to draw up the final recommendations (future challenges).

The main deliverable of the project is the publication “Minors, Migrants and Refugees: the Mediterraneanand Central European situation”, which not only comparesthe above-mentioned aspectsbutalso outlines the most important future challenges.

A transnational comparative study should now be conducted, based on the analyses from the different countries, so that common approaches can be adopted in the EU to a group that needs particular protection: children.

Awareness of the real situation of migrant and refugee minorswill lead to the adoption of the policies that must be developed in the EU and implemented with specific measures at local level, which is the level closest to these new European citizens. It is necessary to comply withexisting legislation to avoid situations whereby these children lack legal and social protection. To achieve this, immigration and political asylum policies must be urgently discussed to avoid xenophobia and marginalisation.

Apart from their migrant or refugee status, the group studied in this project are first and foremost minors and their interests as such should therefore prevail, as recognised in national laws and in the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which has been ratified by the EU Member States.

Programmes aimed at integrating these minors in society should not differentiate between them and children who are nationals of EU countries, as this leads to discrimination. Unaccompanied migrant children ought to receive the support needed to guarantee equality of opportunity with children who are EU nationals.

The work done by non-governmental organisations in the countries concerned merits special recognition for having put into practice the political strategies of reception and integration of these minors. At European level, the viewpoints of these organisations should be taken into account when assessing situations and proposals for better treatment and prevention of the violence experienced by these children who are living in our streets.


  1. List of keywords that best describe your project (please use the form attached);
  2. List of materials produced during your project (audio or audio-visual media, publications, brochures, manuals, posters, CD-ROM, web-site).


Beneficiaries / Daphne Objectives / Areas
X Children / Support to the collaboration of organisations /  Sexual violence
X Young people /  Support to multidisciplinary networks /  Gender violence
 Women / X Exchange of good practices /  Violence in family
X Studies /  Violence in domestic context
Specific groups / Support to public awareness / X Violence in schools
 Homosexuals / X Information campaign / X Violence in institutions
X Migrants /  Information sources / X Violence in urban areas
X Refugee / X Recognition and reporting /  Violence in rural areas
X Asylum seekers /  Violence in the work place
X Trafficked persons / X Trafficking in human beings
X Ethnic minorities / Specific Objectives /  Commercial sexual exploitation
 Handicapped / X Prevention of violence /  Internet
 Domestic workers / X Protection from violence /  Child Pornography
X People in prostitution / X Treatment of victims / X Racism
 Elderly /  Reintegration of victims /  Self-harm
 Prisoners / X Counselling victims /  Physical punishment
 Support to families /  Female genital mutilation
Targeted Audience / X Legislative measures /  Health impacts
 Violent men /  Treatment of offenders
 Perpetrators / offenders /  Reintegration of offenders / Instruments
X Public Authorities /  Network with NGOs
X General Public /  Multisector network
X Medical staff / X Awareness-raising
X Educational staff / X Dissemination of good practice
X Police staff / X Guidelines / Counselling
X Judicial staff /  Models (analysis / development)
X Media / Journalists /  Training
X Production of materials
X Conference / seminar
 Telephone / Internet Helpline
 Field work

Daphne project: 2002-125_1