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Friday 27.11.2020

The study includes 4 phases. We are in the process of completing Phase 1 by analyzing data that was collected across the country. The goal of Phase 1 was to map:

  1. the psychosocial needs of unaccompanied and separated children (UASC) who live in long-term facilities in Greece
  1. the mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) services which are provided to them
  2. the good practices, gaps and obstacles in MHPSS service provision.

A rapid assessment of the mental health and psychosocial needs and resources was conducted between March and October 2020. The 4-W tool proposed by IASC (2007) was used to document Who is Where, When, doing What to meet the needs of UASC in Greece. The tool was extended to also assess How perceptions converge or differ among those who support UASC, with regard to their needs, availability and effectiveness of MHPSS services.


Five research questions guided the rapid assessment:

  1. Which are the perceived challenges, psychosocial and mental health needs of UASC who live in long term facilities?
  2. How these challenges and needs are being addressed, when and by whom?
  3. What are the perceived gaps and obstacles in providing MHPSS to UASC?
  4. What are the perceived good practices in providing MHPSS services to UASC
  5. How perceptions of facility managers, field workers and directors of community mental health services converge or differ as to needs and MHPSS services provided to UASC.


We adopted a exploratory, predominantly quantitative design to identify UASC’s psychosocial challenges, needs, and MHPSS services, as perceived by facility managers, by field workers who provide psychosocial support and by community mental health professionals to whom UASC are referred to. The design also comprised a complementary qualitative component with the purpose to elicit additional data.


A purposeful total sampling approach was adopted. The sample was comprised of all (a) the non-governmental agencies which operate long-term facilities for UASC in Greece, and (b) all the community MHPSS services and child psychiatry clinics to which UASC are referred to, when mental health issues arise.

16 non governmental organizations which operate shelters and SILs were invited to participate. Only one refused participation (response rate 93,75%). 13 community MHPSS services for minors and child psychiatry clinics across the country were identified as referral agencies and institutions by field workers. They were invited and all accepted participation (Response rate 100%).

Three subsamples of participants were invited to complete an online survey.

Subsample 1. N=45 Facility Managers of UASC accommodation (F-Mg). 

They assume an administrative role and are responsible for the smooth operation of a shelter or multiple SILs. They collaborate with the NGO’s administration as well as with the team of field workers who assume the care and support of UASC.

Response Rate among F-Mg: 75,56%

Subsample 2. N=40 Facility Mental Health Professionals (F-MHP).

They are psychologists and social workers who belong to the care team responsible for the care of UASC who live in shelters or SILs. Given that each team had often more than one psychologist and social worker, we invited the one with longest experience in providing psychosocial support to UASC.

Response Rate among F-MHP: 68,29%

Subsample 3. N=17 Directors of Community Mental Health Services or Child Psychiatry ClinicsC-MHP). They assume administrative and clinical responsibilities and supervise the mental health care team of a community mental health service or of a Child Psychiatry Clinics in a state hospital to which UASC with serious mental health problems are commonly referred to or hospitalized.

Response Rate among C-MHP: 94,12%


Soon we will inform you about the results of the mapping study (Phase 1).