John* is ready for secondary school. He passed his last test in a reception centre in the south of Italy, where the 15-year- old refugee from West Africa is awaiting his asylum procedure.

Humanitarian aid

Fleeing without parents

Proud and cool he shows his assignment; the assignment that finally allows him to go back to school. John* (15) is a refugee child from West Africa who ended up in the south of Italy after a flight that lasted for months and that was concluded by life-threatening journey over sea. Without parents or family.

Thousands of children 'disappear'

Once in the centre, there is not much to do apart from waiting for the asylum procedure. This may take months and sometimes even more than a year: one of the reasons why thousands of children ‘disappear’ from the reception centre.

'Africa's smiling coast'

Under the supervision of Terre des Hommes employees, John was able to prepare for secondary school. His last test was an assignment on ‘Africa’s smiling coast’. It is one of the activities that Terre des Hommes uses to help thousands of refugee children on Sicily since 2012.

*) To protect this boy we changed his name

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