Migrant children, social capital and access to services: transitions, negotiations and complex agencies

Daniela Sime, Rachael Fox

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    For migrant children, moving to a new country is marked by excitement, anxiety and practical challenges in managing this significant transition. This paper draws upon the concepts of social capital and social networks to examine migrant children’s access to services post-migration. Using data from a qualitative study with Eastern European families in Scotland, we identify a range of cumulative barriers that limit children’s access to services and illustrate how their experiences are shaped by ethnicity, social class and place. The study shows that migrant children are often disadvantaged post-migration and develop their own mechanisms to mitigate the impact of migration on their lives. We argue that migrant children’s own social networks are relevant and they need to be analysed through a more individualised approach.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)524–534
    Number of pages11
    JournalChildren and Society
    Issue number6
    Early online date21 Aug 2014
    Publication statusPublished - 30 Nov 2015


    • Eastern European migrants
    • children's social networks
    • social inclusion
    • ethnicity
    • children's access to services
    • migrant children
    • migration

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