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Asylum & Trafficking

Barnardo’s has a long history working within the field of forced migration. We have supported children, young people and families who are refugees and asylum seekers and children who are unaccompanied and /or trafficked.

Asylum & Trafficking

Barnardo’s has a long history working within the field of forced migration. We have supported children, young people and families who are refugees and asylum seekers and children who are unaccompanied and /or trafficked.

Key benefits to commissioners

From 2009 Barnardo’s began developing provisions to support trafficked children. As the UK's leading childrens charity, we can provide a weath of knowledge and expertise based on our years of experience of working with children and young people. There are also more specific benefits for a commissioner to work with us including:

  • Our practitioners work to meet the immediate needs of children, focusing on housing and health needs, as well as support around education and future planning. By building trusting relationships, we seek to help children to break free from the relationship with their traffickers.
  • Direct one-to-one support for trafficked children through our three specialist trafficking services in London, Hampshire and Manchester. We also run a specialist fostering service in the South East that provides family placements for trafficked children.
  • In addition to direct support, our staff provides training and awareness raising sessions to local services so that they are better prepared to spot the signs of trafficking and support trafficked children.

Case Study - Charlie came here to go to school

At the age of 15, Charlie* was flown to England from Nigeria by a woman who said she would go to school here.  When she arrived, she was taken to a house and forced into prostitution that very same night. Over two years, she was forced to have sex with 5/6 men every night.

Charlie was found by Police and the woman was arrested. We worked with Charlie to understand what had happened to her and put her case to the Border Authority. We found her a safe place to stay, and supported her at appointments with solicitors, Police, social services, sexual health clinics and Home Office interviews where she had to disclose the horror of her experiences multiple times. We also supported her on the witness stand as she gave evidence in front of a jury, aged just 17. With Barnardo’s support, Charlie is now doing very well.  She has legal status as a refugee in the UK, and the woman who first caused this trauma has been sentenced and is now in prison.

*The names and location in this story have been changed to protect identities.

Related Asylum & Trafficking Links:

Child Trafficking Advocates Trial with the Home Office (PDF - 1.6MB)

This report presents the findings from the evaluation of a one-year trail across 23 local autority areas

Evaluation of the Safe Accommodation Project (PDF - 3.7MB)

Evaluation of a two-year 'Safe Accommodation Project' in response to a growing concern about the current capacity to safeguard victims and those at risk of CSE and/or trafficking

Like any other child?; children and families in the asylum process 2008

This report highlights the abject poverty, racial harassment and demoralising uncertainty, faced by children and families in the asylum system