Numerous Icelandic Families Preparing To Accept Refugee Children - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Numerous Icelandic Families Preparing To Accept Refugee Children

Published November 1, 2016

Photos by
Kristín Rós Kristjánsdóttir

About 20 families are preparing to take a course offered by the Government Agency for Child Protection (GACP) for those with an interest in adopting asylum seeker children who do not have legal guardians.

Bryndís R. Guðmundsdóttir, a specialist at GACP, told Stundin that the number of families could get even bigger, as there has been considerable demand.

“Quite a lot of people have gotten in touch with us,” she said. “It’s pleasant to see how many are ready to take these children into their homes, as this is an unusual and extensive project.”

Most of these children are boys between the ages of 15 and 17, many of them coming from traumatic experiences of war and persecution. Not having parents available puts them in an even more vulnerable position.

The response is in many ways unsurprising. The most recent poll on the subject showed that 73% of Icelanders believe the government should be bringing more refugees into the country, with about 13% saying there are ready to house them themselves.

In this year alone, some 14 applications for asylum were filed by guardian-less children at the Directorate of Immigration.

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