Kinship care and foster care may be available for some UAMs, depending on the canton and on whether they have relatives living in Switzerland. Regarding kinship care, all the actors in the field agree that the families have to be professionally evaluated, prepared and monitored in order to guarantee the minor’s safety, welfare and development and to avoid the risks of abuse or exploitation.

Two good examples of foster care for UAMs are the village of Vallorbe and the Association Tipiti. In Vallorbe, the village where one of the 5 Swiss registration and procedure centres is situated, a network of foster families hosting the younger children (under 14) has been set up.

Association Tipiti, situated in the German-speaking part of Switzerland, receives mandates to place young UAMs into foster families and has experience with intercultural placement. The organization works with a system of preparation, support and monitoring of 40 children in 28 families.

Although these are examples of good practices in fostering UAMs in Switzerland, developing those practices throughout the Swiss cantons is still a challenge. Recruitment, preparation and support of foster families and follow-up of both UAMs and families can also be improved. Finally, Switzerland does not have accurate statistics on foster children, foster families and organizations for family placement at the national level.

Mrs. Elodie Antony, Chargée de projet
International Social Services (ISS)
9, rue du Valais, CH-1211 Genève 1
+41 22 731 67 00