Our goal is to improve migrant children’s social inclusion. To this extent, the Never Alone founders have highlighted the strategic importance of the “voluntary guardian” who is a private citizen who acts on a voluntary basis as the legal representative of unaccompanied children. He/she has passed a special selection procedure led by the regional Ombudsperson for Children and Adolescents, he/she has been trained by the same Authority and has been appointed by the Juvenile Court.
Despite the progressive enforcement of the reform introducing this new role (art.11, Law 47/2017), however the voluntary guardianship is, under many circumstances, still fragile.
That is why some important steps have been taken by Never Alone to support the guardians in the delicate phase of children’s approach to autonomous living before, but also after, adulthood.
Within this framework, a significant contribution has been made to the Pass4You project – technical support to voluntary guardians, implemented by INTERSOS and ASGI since October 2019 with a duration of 12 months. This project aims to streamline the guardians’ access to Embassies and Consulates for passports release in view of the renewal of the unaccompanied children’s residence permit.
From March 2020, a 12 months pilot project will be implemented in 3 Regions (Piedmont, Tuscany, and Sicily). Through this granted project, practical tools will be developed and made available to the volunteer guardians as well as targeted activities aiming at enhancing their capacity to support unaccompanied migrant children about to turn 18 years old or young adults already.
Actually there are volunteer guardians that still play an important role in the life of unaccompanied for migrant children even after turn 18 years old, and at the same time, there are other private citizens who have attended the voluntary guardians training courses but haven’t practiced that role yet and who could meanwhile be mentor of young adults boys and girls who have never had a voluntary guardian before (so-called social guardianship).