Repatriation and the best interests of the child: The rearing environment and wellbeing of migrant children after return to Kosovo and Albania

Daniëlle Zevulun

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Abstract

Comprising an understudied group in academic research, this study provides insight into the rearing environment and wellbeing of repatriated migrant and asylum-seeker children in Kosovo and Albania. Many migrants in the EU originate from the Western Balkan and often face low chances regarding a residence permit on grounds of asylum. Knowledge about how children fare after the repatriation to their country of origin is needed to better consider the interests of children in decisions within migration procedures, in line with article 3 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child. The findings show that the most vulnerable children did not have a stable resident status in the host country, belong to a minority ethnic group and are older adolescents. These children face more problems related to reintegration and wellbeing after return. A follow-up study concerning families, who received assistance after the first assessment, shows that a part of the children still faced problems after three years. They live in poverty, experience barriers to enrolling or staying in education, have difficulties with establishing friendships or with being bullied, have language problems or no connection with the society after the return. The findings in this research emphasise the importance of monitoring, and for identifying care objectives and planning of the support that is needed for a child to reintegrate successfully after return to the country of origin. The dissertation provides points of consideration regarding the preparation and reintegration support for migrant children who need to return to their country of origin.
Translated title of the contributionTerugkeer en het belang van het kind: De opvoedingsomgeving en het welzijn van migrantenkinderen na terugkeer in Kosovo en Albanië
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • University of Groningen
Supervisors/Advisors
  • Kalverboer, Margrite, Supervisor
  • Knorth, Erik, Supervisor
  • Zijlstra, Elianne, Co-supervisor
  • Post, Wendy, Co-supervisor
  • Grietens, H. W. E., Assessment committee
  • Vanobbergen, B., Assessment committee, External person
  • Kohli, R. K. S., Assessment committee, External person
Award date14-Dec-2017
Place of Publication[Groningen]
Publisher
Print ISBNs978-94-034-0218-5
Electronic ISBNs978-94-034-0217-8
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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