Every child has a story to tell…

There are more than 110 million people who are forcibly displaced in the world today. That means 1 in every 73 people has been forced to leave their homes because of persecution, conflict, violence,
human rights violations or events seriously disturbing public order. 43.3 million of these are children In 2022 children made up less than one third of the global population, but more than 41 per cent of the world’s refugees.

Globally, barriers to migration and forcible returns continue. For example, according to UNHCR: Violence, ill-treatment and pushbacks continue to be regularly reported at multiple entry points at land and sea borders, within and beyond the European Union (EU), despite repeated calls by UN agencies, including UNHCR, intergovernmental organizations and NGOs to end such practices. Since that report was written in 2022, illegal pushbacks and the inumane treatment of those trying to seek refuge across borders continues. A report released by the Council of Europe found widespread use of violence, intimidation and prolonged detention and a persistent disregard for basic legal safeguards and the right to access asylum across Europe.

According to Save the Children, in 2023 20% of of those who arrived in Europe via the Mediterranean sea were children, some of whom had been travelling for almost a decade to reach safety. It is estimated that 11 children died each week trying to cross the Central Mediterranean route in.

Meanwhile increasing numbers of children are on the move in Latin America. UNICEF estimates that 40 000 children headed North through the dangerous Darien gap in the first half of 2023 and half of these were under 5 years old

Why are children fleeing their homes and seeking refuge elsewhere? What is it like to flee Afghanistan, be bombed in Syria,  threatened with kidnap and murder in El Salvador, or flee forced prostitution in West Africa? How do they manage these journeys? What happens if you are kidnapped in Libya? How do you get in a rubber boat to cross an ocean when you have never seen the sea before? Live in a refugee camp in Northern Greece or a shelter in southern Mexico? How do you smuggle yourself across the Italian Border? How has Covid 19 affected children on the move? What do these children hope for their future?

On this website children from the Middle East, South East Asia, West Africa, East Africa, and Central America tell their stories and give you their own answers, in words and pictures. They are now living or travelling through Greece, France, Italy, the Balkans and the UK, or moving from Central America to Mexico and the United States.

Take a look…