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New programme to protect children affected by migration launched in Kazakhstan

18.07.2018, 17:54 3229
UN Children's fund (UNICEF), European Union and the Commissioner for Human Rights in the Republic of Kazakhstan launched a new joint programme protecting children affected by migration.

The three year programme will be implemented with the Government of Kazakhstan, national and international partners, UNHCR and IOM, UNICEF official website reads.

The European Union has contributed Ђ10.5 million to support UNICEF's work protecting children affected by migration in seven countries across Southeast, South and Central Asia. The contribution will reach children who are migrants, have been forcibly displaced or have been left behind by parents or caregivers who have migrated, often in search of better economic opportunities to support their families.

Children affected by migration are too often pushed to the margins of society. They are cut off from essential services and are vulnerable to violence, exploitation and abuse. UNICEF thanks the European Union for this generous contribution, which will better protect children who are on the move internally and cross-border, either unaccompanied or separated, often with the lack of access to essential services," said Yuri Oksamitniy, UNICEF Representative in Kazakhstan.

Kazakhstan is a destination and transit country for many adults and children; however, the exact number of children on the move is still unknown. The EU's contribution will help Kazakhstan gain additional information on the status of children in migration processes. It aims to strengthen national child protection systems by raising the quality of service provision with a protective migration procedures and case management principles, improving training curriculum of social workers, law enforcement and migration officers, enhancing the national legislative framework. It will enable practitioners to timely identify, refer and assist vulnerable children affected by migration. This work includes ensuring children and families have access to psychosocial support and birth registration, health care and education, and legal aid.

The joint programme will facilitate the dialogue between the Central Asian governments and Independent Human Rights Institutions on establishing and strengthening systems for sharing information on family tracing and reunification across borders, child statelessness, and monitoring the status of children in migration processes.

Migrant children are in a state of particular vulnerability, because of their age, their distance from home, and often their separation from parents or care takers. Therefore, they require specific and appropriate protection," said Johannes Stenbaek Madsen, the Head of EU Cooperation in Kazakhstan.

The programme will ensure children in migration processes are never placed in detention, by strengthening alternative care options. It will also help gather data and evidence to better understand the number of children affected by migration across Kazakhstan and Central Asia and the specific challenges and needs of these children and their families.

Note to Editor:

The programme is funded by the European Union and implemented in seven countries across Southeast, South and Central Asia.


UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.

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