European Guardianship Network
Direct Grant
September 2019 – December 2022



Professional guardianship is not the rule in Europe. Guardians are often volunteers, with only their own network, their passion and a few days of training to rely on. While this is already a challenge in the simplest of guardianship cases, it becomes a serious problem in the more difficult ones. EGN partners promote all development towards professional guardianship and increased quality of guardianship. From this principle, more resources, training, access to information and assistance for individual or voluntary guardians is welcomed and is supported by EGN. EGN wants to improve the working standards of guardians and – by doing so – the rights and well-being of unaccompanied and separated children by assisting in the development of guardianship systems, offering support to individual guardians or social workers and exchanging good practices.

The Network

Until recently the network consisted of several projects, aiming at developing the quality and quantity of and knowledge about guardianship. Projects were set up by different alliances of organisations. At the beginning of 2019 the network was transformed to a more formal, member-based structure, based on recent developments in the EU and in several Member States towards more professionalism in guardianship. The network will enable further professionalisation of guardianship systems in the EU, thus further improving the outcome for the unaccompanied and separated children in the system.


EGN aims to promote guardianship and improve guardianship services for unaccompanied and separated children in the EU Member States by exchanging good practices, expertise and other relevant information and sharing ideas and cooperation on common challenges and cross border work.


Contact details

Terry Smith
Project Manager European Guardianship Network 

Fleur van der Heyden
Policy Officer European Cooperation Unit Nidos
+31 (0) 6 16135013