This event took place on 24th September 2020. Discussion notes are available - see below. For more information on the event, the SIG or plans for future similar events, please contact the SIG chairs.

There are many unique aspects of working with children and young people in migration* - how are those ways of working being disrupted, challenged or facilitated during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic?

On 24th September, 2020, CRN Special Interest Group for Child and Youth Migration (CYMSIG) brought together 27 academics and practitioners working in the field of children and youth in migration for a specially convened forum to discuss challenges, experiences and responses to working with this cohort during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The three main topics considered by the group were:

  1. Challenges and changes of working with children and youth in migration in the current climate.
  2. Building relationships with young people in the online and remote space.
  3. Looking to the future: reflections and implications.

The session was chaired by Dr Derina Johnson, Trinity College Dublin; and the Rapporteur was Aoife Dare, Irish Refugee Council and CYMSIG Co-Chair. The other CYMSIG working group members involved in organising the event were Amy Stapleton, Diego Castillo Gonvales, and Jessica Farnan.


Please note: The emphasis of this discussion forum was on how the pandemic has impacted us as practitioners and researchers – how our work has changed, the challenges we have faced, how we have adapted and what we think our work will look like in the future. When planning this event, we were very mindful that we did not want to focus on the experiences of young people as we did not want to speak for them or on their behalf and we recognise that they are more than able to speak for themselves about their own experiences. Occasionally, the conversation did move into the challenges faced by young people at this time, which is of course completely understandable. Those discussions, however, are not captured in the discussion notes in order to keep the focus on us as practitioners and researchers, and on our experiences, challenges and strategies, rather than speaking for the young people we work with and support.

*The SIG understands children and young people in migration in broad terms, including (but not limited to) migrant, displaced, asylum-seeking, refugee, 1.5 / 2nd generation, and Roma, children and youth. Recognising the need to gain a greater picture on the situation of young people in all areas of: education/training, social inclusion & health & wellbeing, the SIG adopts the European Commission’s definition on youth which includes individuals up until 30 years of age following youth indicators established by the commission’s ad-hoc expert group in January 2010.

About the CRN Special Interest Group for Child and Youth Migration

Formed in October 2019, the Child and Youth Migration Special Interest Group (CYMSIG) of the Children’s Research Network provides a platform for people working on or interested in related research, evidence-informed practice and policy to build networks, share information, and promote best practice on all matters related to child and youth migration. Membership is made up of members of CRN and represent a range of sectors, including academia / independent research; NGOs; government/statutory bodies; community, voluntary and social enterprise entities; service providers.

The CYMSIG welcomes into its membership anyone working on or interested in research, evidence-informed practice and policy on matters related to child and youth migration.

For more information, see the CYMSIG page on the CRN website

About the Children’s Research Network

The Children’s Research Network (CRN) supports and connects a broad range of professionals with an interest in research and evidence-based policy and practice to better understand and improve the lives of children and families across the island of Ireland.

Membership benefits

  • Gain insights into developments in research, practice and policy through our workshops, seminars and conferences
  • Build your networks and develop your profile
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