Post Eviction Information


Advice from Mícheál MacAoidh of Refugee Youth Service - 8th November 2016

Refugee Youth Service is working with our our Save The Children partners to catalogue any concerns about where minors are housed and see them escalated to the right channels.

Please email with any concerns you have.

It is important to include the following information

  1. the location of the centre
  2. the concern raised about the centre or provisions within it
  3. the details about how this information was received. eg first hand from a child there, read it on another posting. Was this contact you initiated with a child or a case of the child reaching out for help.
  4. the nature of your relationship with this child, eg a teacher or youth worker within the camp, an acquaintance of yours or sibling of an adult migrant you were working with,
  5. any particular concerns you have about the young person who raised this with you.

I am mindful that children can sometimes embellish situations or misrepresent them without the intention to deceive. For example, a child complaining there is no water and they have to drink from the toilet might actually mean they are taking water from the taps in the bathroom. Whilst this is not acceptable, it is good to be clear when raising concerns with the authorities

We have had visits from the children's ombudsman secured as a result of concerns flagged this way.

Also please note that there are very good reasons why people should not be allowed to visit children in these centres.

These are some of the most vulnerable children within Europe at present, and whilst the solidarity and support within the Calais camp was at times fantastic. It was a huge failing on the part of the state to see unrestricted access to so many vulnerable children for so long within the camp. They remain hugely vulnerable and are in need of protection.

We have long pushed for the state to live up to its duty to children and as such as they enter state care our role now has changed to focus on holding the state to account and ensuring children's rights are respected rather than directly intervening, which could be seen as undermining existing state processes

It's also good to be mindful that many of the children who have left the camp in Calais will not be granted access to the UK and will need to understand that their best hope of protection and entering schooling, housing and other such essentials may be here within France, Whilst many of us have legitimate criticisms about both governments a lot of work will need to be done still to support young people to make positive choices about their future when it may feel to them that they have limited options.


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