LOCATION AND GENERAL INFORMATION
Emergency relief for vulnerable refugee children and families while they are on the road in southeast Europe.
The ‘Balkan route’
The situation of refugees and migrants arriving en masse on the Greek islands from Turkey and heading to western Europe (particularly Germany) through FYR Macedonia, Serbia, Croatia and Slovenia has become a major humanitarian issue. In February 2016, one-third of those refugees were children. Access to basic services (including shelter, sanitation, food and clothing) still needs to be improved, as the flow of refugees and migrants heading towards Europe is not likely to decrease in the coming months. Children and the mothers of young children are particularly in need and at greater risk.
A large-scale emergency operation in FYR Macedonia and Serbia has already provided relief to more than 11,000 refugee families by distributing essential cold-weather items and hygiene products, setting up safe areas for mothers and children, and providing information to refugees and much-needed psychosocial support to the most vulnerable – notably young children. The operation will continue around the transit zones of Tabanovce in FYR Macedonia and Adasevci in Serbia during the coming summer months.
Expected results and scheduled actions
1) At least 6,000 refugee children and mothers will receive emergency non-food items to meet their basic needs in winter conditions. The project aims to distribute hygiene products, with a strong focus on women and adolescent girls, and life-saving winter items. The project will help to prevent outbreaks of disease, while also contributing to people’s sense of dignity in these difficult circumstances.
2) At least 10,000 children and their families will receive protection and support through recreational activities, emergency counselling and activities promoting health. The benefits of recreational activities and children being able to play in a secure environment have been shown to have a significant positive impact in tough situations: play and creative recreational activities help children to strengthen their resilience and deal with stress and negative experiences. Using trained professionals, the project will provide recreational activities to children (particularly those aged three to ten) and their mothers, as well as providing parents with ‘psychological first aid’, health advice and referrals to appropriate services where needed.
3) Children and their families will be able to access information and means of communication in order to be regularly updated on their rights and the risks they face and to maintain social connections with their country of origin and family members. The project will provide access to accurate information on child protection, health issues, refugee rights, the risk of being trafficked, travel issues and access to services. This information will be available in Arabic, English and Dari and will be provided in a timely manner in a variety of ways (such as orally or in the form of leaflets and maps). Where possible, the project will also provide recharging points for mobile phones and GSM wireless devices.
- Terre des hommes http://www.tdh.ch/en
- Child Protection http://childhub.org/
- Terre des hommes www.terredeshommes.hu