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Not only adults and families with children try to reach Europe to start a better life but also youngsters and even children arrive in Europe without the guidance of a parent. Now more than ever with the tragic and ongoing war in Ukraine, which sees a growing number of unaccompanied minors fleeing the conflict, foster care services report an enormous need to offer therapeutic "healing and development oriented" - care for these youngsters and their foster families. Furthermore, national authorities are extremely challenged on how Unaccompanied Minor Refugees (UMR) have to be taken care of, according to national and international standards of child care and children's rights.

In the frame of the FORM project, Therapeutic foster care for unaccompanied minors and their foster families, 6 partners from 4 EU countries, including Belgium (Odisee University College, Foster care East Flanders v.z.w. Ghent), Germany (University of Kassel), Italy (Centro Nazionale Opere Salesiane, ENSA European Network for Social Authorities) and Cyprus ("Hope For Children" CRC Policy Center), join efforts to bring together knowledge and experiences for empowerment and social inclusion of UMR and their Foster Families.

The main outcomes are:

  • A literature review on research and on existing guidance and practices in the context of foster care within the European member state countries;

  • A guidance model - to be used by professional foster care workers - for the delivery of therapeutic care for minor refugees and their foster families. The model will be based on research but practice-oriented in order to be easily used by all foster care actors in the EU;

  • A training in exile on the model, addressed to professional foster care workers;

  • Policy and implemented recommendations.

To learn more about the project and the partnership visit:

Funding reference

FORM project is co-financed by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Commission (Ref. 2021-1-BE02-KA220-VET-000033060)



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