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While finding a safe place to belong to, children lack child-friendly and reliable information on their rights. This too often leads to a situation where the smugglers or traffickers who brought them into the country will be their most trusted source of information, rather than our authorities, who are in charge of their protection. In these conditions, children may feel that they have no other option but to continue their journey in unsafe conditions, and go missing – often to end up in exploitative situations.
To date, no organised platform is known to be available to provide targeted, child-friendly information to these young newcomers, in their own language. Our institutions and some organisations are making local efforts to provide leaflets or other informative materials. However, such practices are not consistent enough, even within the same country.
They often do not take into account that a specific language is needed when explaining complicated procedures to children, or that their needs evolve as they move across Europe.