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New short guidance for local authorities on community-based mentoring of migrant children

Published 20 July 2021 / By COMPAS Communications

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Introduction

The City Initiative on Migrants with Irregular Status in Europe (C-MISE) has now published a short guidance on municipal projects for the mentoring of migrant children and youth, regardless of residence status.

Mentoring is a community-based programme that fosters relationships of trust between local residents and migrant children, with the goal of promoting their positive development, a sense of belonging to their new context, language acquisition and educational expectations of migrant and refugee children. Prepared by researchers at the University of Girona in partnership with C-MISE, this guidance highlights best-practices from the cities of Barcelona and Girona (Spain). Through partnerships between municipal authorities, universities, schools and NGOs, the programme matches migrant children with duly-trained local university students, who meet on a regularly basis with the aim of supporting language acquisition for newly-arrived children, avoiding their school drop-out, support their professional development and job-search, and so forth. Mentoring programmes also have benefits for the mentors (e.g. in improving their intercultural skills) contributing to social cohesion at the local level. Based on the experiences of the ‘Nightingale project’ in Girona and Barcelona, this short guidance provides key learnings for other local stakeholders meaning to implement similar projects in their city. It offers information on potential models for mentoring programmes, responsibilities of local stakeholders (the city, universities, schools, and NGOs), costs and they key steps for a city to adopt similar programmes.

Read the short guidance here.