Blog
By: IOM Belgium

Fostering a refugee child, an unaccompanied minor, is an adventure with ups and downs, often with beautiful encounters and stories.

Research and child protection practitioners agree that family-based care provides a clear added value to unaccompanied minors and is preferred over placement in large-scale shelters. Unaccompanied minors in foster families indeed seem to integrate better, do better at school and are generally healthier. In the light of the Belgian Week of Foster Care, we are honored to give the floor to U-CARE partner Pleegzorg Vlaanderen, a foster mom, an unaccompanied minor in foster care and an NGO Minor-Ndako – in our new podcast mini-series.

Meet Caroline Bréart, foster care worker at Pleegzorg Vlaanderen. In this episode, Caroline gives us a look into her day-to-day job and underlines the benefits of having a culturally sensitive approach when it comes to placement in foster families: "Being fostered in a family with the same cultural background creates a feeling to remain in connection with one’s home environment."
Interview also available in French, English subtitles on IOM Belgium and Luxembourg's Facebook page.

Meet Sylvana Mpabwanayo-Ntaryamira, foster mom of 30 children and counting. Sylvana takes us on her remarkable foster care journey that began in Burundi and continues in her warm and loving home in Belgium.
Interview also available in French, English subtitles on IOM Belgium and Luxembourg's Facebook page.

Meet Amir, who arrived as an unaccompanied minor in Europe and was cared for by his older brother in Europe. Amir, now an adult and reunited with his mom, testifies about his journey in Europe and his experience with foster care.
Interview also available in Dutch, English subtitles on IOM Belgium and Luxembourg's Facebook page.

Meet Sandra Otten, the team lead of Mina at Minor-Ndako, an NGO that offers adapted care and support to unaccompanied minors in Belgium. Together with her small "Mina" team of colleagues, she takes care of the direct placements of recently-arrived UMC under the age of 14 in Belgian foster families.
Interview also available in Dutch, English subtitles on IOM Belgium and Luxembourg's Facebook page.

 

Listen to the Mini-Series on Spotify – IOM Belgium and Luxembourg | Podcast on Spotify

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