The Asylum Process for Minors
*Refer to Glossary of Terms
Click below to download your rights as a minor in Italy (in English and Arabic).
The Asylum Process for Children
As a minor, when applying for asylum in Italy, you should immediately say that you are an unaccompanied minor so that you can receive the right care. The local authorities are responsible for getting you housing and health care. You will also be assigned a guardian to help you process your application. Italian law does not allow a minor to apply for asylum without an adult guardian.
How to Apply for Asylum
EDIT: After the abolition of the SPRAR system (reception centres for asylum seekers and refugees), there are now only facilities limited to refugees and unaccompanied minors. In fact, many reception centres have been closed and all the hosted people have been sent to other facilities or, in the worst cases, remain on the streets.
Go to a “governmental first reception center” for shelter. The legal representative of the reception center must help you with the asylum procedures until you are assigned a guardian in Italy. If you have problems at your reception center, call the numbers listed below to get help. At arrival apply for asylum at the “hotspot” (first reception centre), after this, everyone is given no more than 30 days to verify the identity/nationality. If you have a prior expulsion, in the repatriation centre, you will be given no more than 180 days to verify identity/nationality.
You should be transferred to the national Protection System Asylum Seekers and Refugees (SPRAR) facility after 30 days, but this may take a year or more. When there is no room in the reception center or the SPRAR, the municipality is responsible for helping you find a place to stay.
Once you have a legal guardian, he or she is responsible for assisting you during the entire asylum procedure, as well as afterwards in case you receive a negative decision and decide to appeal. Your guardian must accompany you to the police, where you will be fingerprinted if you are over 14. He or she will help you formalize the asylum claim and must be present at your personal interview with the authorities.
If you don’t know your age, you may be asked to undergo an age assessment. You have the right to deny this examination, but it is the best way to get protection as a minor if you’re unsure of your age. You have the right to ask about the objectives, methods, and potential consequences of the age assessment.
Seeking asylum is only the first step to establishing your new life in Italy. These resources will aid you on your journey to becoming independent. Below you’ll find a list of organizations and descriptions of their services, divided by region (Multiple regions, North Mainland, South Mainland, Rome, and Islands).
The “Never Alone” initiative will help you gain autonomy through training, job orientation, internships and housing in the cities of Turin, Catania, and Rome.
Contact: Never Alone or Fondazione Cariplo
Telephone: +39 0262391
Address:Via Daniele Manin, 23, 20121 Milan
The Minori Migrati Helpline is a toll-free telephone line that offers advice to foreign minors migrating to Italy. You can call this number for legal assistance, psychological support, cultural mediation, and to learn about how to access social services. Whether you speak Italian, Arabic, English, French, Tigrin, Somali or a sub-Saharan dialect, there will be someone there to guide you in your own language.
Contact: Save the Children
Hotline toll-free number: 800 14 10 16
Address: Via Volturno 58, Rome
Twitter handle: @SaveChildrenIT
SOS Children’s Villages provides long-term accommodation to children who are without a parent or guardian. Each house in the village hosts 4-10 children who stay with a residential educator.
Contact: SOS Children’s Villages
Address: Milan Office: Via Durazzo, 5 20134, Milan
Centro Astalli (Jesuit Refugee Service) is dedicated to serving and defending the rights of refugees. The Center has a soup kitchen where it serves lunch from 3pm to 5pm each day without using alcohol or pork in respect to its Muslim visitors. The Center offers health services, a school, psychiatric and psychological support to victims of violence, and reception centers. The House of Giorgia is specifically directed at serving women and children.
Contact: Centro Astalli Association - Jesuit Refugee Service / Italy
Address: Via degli Astalli 14/a, Rome
The Joel Nafuma Refugee Center is a day center for asylum seekers and refugees near the St. John’s Within the Wall Episcopal Church. The center includes daily breakfast and supplies of clothing, shoes, blankets, and sleeping bags. You can receive free language classes, tailoring lessons, computer lessons,help looking for university scholarships or jobs, legal advice, art and music therapy, and psychotherapy services.
Contact: Joel Nafuma Refugee Center
Telephone: +39 06 4883339
Fax: +39 06 4814549
Address: Via Napoli 58, 00184 Rome
Accoglierete is a nonprofit organization with the mission of protecting unaccompanied foreign minors. To accomplish this, a volunteer guardian is placed with you.. Even if you are living in a reception center, you are safer with your guardian.. You can also access lawyers, psychologists, and cultural mediators at Accoglierete’s emergency centers.
Contact: Accoglierete (Associazione per la Tutela dei MSNA)
Information line: 09311665387
Address: via Piave 167 96100 Siracusa