EU-MiCare “Training the EU health workforce to improve migrant and refugee mental health care” is a three-year project (October 2022, September 2025) co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union, targeting migrants and refugees’ mental health needs.
As migrants and refugee flows to Europe continue- and the recent crisis in Ukraine has significantly increased them- mental health issues will become a key concern for migrants as well as host communities and health services in transit and final destination countries. Migrants and refugees usually have to deal with many challenges while trying to adjust to a new culture, such as the absence of information concerning important aspects of their lives, hostility by local citizens in the country of settlement etc. Refugees and asylum seekers in particular face several threats to their quality of life, due to the prolonged stay in transit countries, which can last up to several years. These may include insecure housing, violence, barriers to employment, higher risk of exposure to infectious diseases and limited access to health care facilities. All these factor can have a great impact on the mental health of refugees and migrants.
EU-MiCare can be considered as a continuation of the Erasmus + EU-VET CARE project (www.euvetcare.eu/), which implemented vocational training to improve the provision of healthcare for migrant/ refugee children.
The research carried out as part of the EU-VET CARE project underlined that health professionals needed and highly valued further training on intercultural competences and mental health issues, not only focus on children.
It will comprise interdisciplinary modules for health professionals who can benefit from a deeper understanding of mental health issues to provide comprehensive care and specialized modules designed for mental health professionals to provide a more in-depth coverage of the adverse mental health outcomes migrants/refuges face.
- enhance professional capacity to respond to the mental health needs of vulnerable migrant and refugee populations;
- raise awareness about the potential of interdisciplinary and cross-cultural collaboration;
- increase awareness of the relevant professional communities and organizations on the developed training;
- increase possibilities of health professionals who work with migrants and refugees to benefit from the Erasmus+ program;
- raise awareness on mental health issues among migrants and refugees, so they can easier identify them and be encouraged in asking for help;
- enhance partner capabilities to develop and deliver appropriate training to health professionals working with migrants and refugees experiencing psychological discomfort.
The primary target groups of the project are:
- health professionals (psychologists, social workers, physicians, nurses) as well as other professionals (cultural mediators, interpreters, counselors, caregivers of unaccompanied minors) and volunteers working with migrant/refugee populations in various settings such as, reception camps, NGOs, public mental health centers, hospitals, shelters for unaccompanied minors, etc.;
- Vocational Education and Training (VET) providers, developers of VET training and Academic institutions (targeted to further use and exploit the developed training);
- relevant professional associations, public sector and civil society organizations active in the field of migrant/refuge health.
Secondary target groups include migrant/refugee populations (adults, children and their families, unaccompanied minors).
These groups will be targeted though migrant/refugee organizations with the aim of taking into consideration their opinions during the design of the training. The longer-term impact of the EU-MiCare project involves improved care for migrant/refugees and the development of a more effective, integrated (multidisciplinary) approach in the provision of mental health services to this population.