Kindheit und Entwicklung, volume 24, issue 4, 2015

Demand for help and provision of services in the care of unaccompanied refugee minors

A systematic review by Andreas Witt, Miriam Rassenhofer, Jörg M. Fegert and Paul L. Plener (Klinik für Kinder und Jugendpsychiatrie/Psychotherapie, Universitätsklinik Ulm, Germany).


During the last few years, Germany has seen a tremendous increase in the number of unaccompanied refugee minors (URM). This situation poses new demands on clinical care, as URM are a highly vulnerable group. The existing literature for mental health problems and their longitudinal course was reviewed to evaluate the needs of this population. We collected feedback from URM on their experiences with service provision. The clinical picture was mostly dominated by posttraumatic stress symptoms, which tended to be stable over a longer time span. In addition, there was a high proportion of resilient URM. In service studies, URM often voiced their wish for access to schooling and language training allowing for a rapid integration.
Keywords: unaccompanied refugee minors, URM, review, service provision, mental health problems.

View the full study (in German only – pdf, 18 pages).