STANDARD 35: Ensure that unaccompanied children have access to sufficient and adequate food.
Indicator 35.1: Food safety standards are observed.
- Additional remarks: In line with the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) (26) for food safety, developed by the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO), the sanitation of housing, and in particular of kitchen areas, should follow a preventive, rather than a corrective approach. In line with this standard, the cleanliness of kitchen areas should be ensured, as a lack of cleanliness could turn out to be a hazard for the overall health in the housing.
- Food safety standards concerning infrastructure of sanitation and general standards of cleanliness of kitchen areas should be observed also when unaccompanied children cook for themselves.
Indicator 35.2: A minimum five meals are served per day of which at least one is cooked and served warm.
- Additional remarks: A meal is defined both as a cooked, cold or warm dish and as a smaller snack or fruits. The meals are not necessarily distributed at five different times during the day.
Indicator 35.3: The daily schedule of unaccompanied children should be taken into consideration when serving the meals.
- Additional remarks: This could mean that unaccompanied children are provided the possibility to be serviced with separately cooked or reheated meals if, for example, children go to school, work and/or participate in leisure activities and therefore miss the regular meal times.
Indicator 35.4: The meals ensure a balanced and varied diet.
- Additional remarks: The composition of the meals varies, e.g. meals are based on cereals, bread and rice, fruits and vegetables, milk, dairy products, meat, eggs, fish.
Indicator 35.5: Unaccompanied children are informed about the composition of the meal.
- Additional remarks: Information could be provided in a general manner (with labels, etc.) or on demand.
Indicator 35.6: Specific arrangements are in place for unaccompanied children with special dietary needs.
- Additional remarks: For example, specific arrangements for unaccompanied children with certain illnesses and food allergies should be taken into account.
Indicator 35.7: The eating preferences and dietary restrictions of specific groups are taken into account.
- Additional remarks: ‘Specific groups’ refers to unaccompanied children from a specific religious and/or cultural background as well as vegetarian/vegan children.
- EU+ States choosing to provide unaccompanied children with a financial allowance or vouchers to cover the costs of food need to ensure that unaccompanied children with eating preferences and dietary restrictions are provided with additional allowances or vouchers to cover the special need of the child.
Good practice with regards to the provision of food
✓ Allow unaccompanied children to cook for themselves where possible and appropriate, given that the children are old enough, have the knowledge to cook for themselves and that this promotes their autonomy and increases the feeling of normality/feeling at home;
STANDARD 36: Ensure that unaccompanied children have access to potable water 24/7.
Indicator 36.1: Each child is provided with a minimum of 2.5 litres of water per day while personal physiology and climate are taken into account.
- Additional remarks: More details about minimum daily drinking water quantity can be found in the standards developed as part of the Sphere Project (27).
Alternative indicators on access to potable water:
Indicator 36.2 a): the infrastructure of the housing is adequate for potable water; OR
Indicator 36.2 b): Potable water is distributed in absence of adequate infrastructure.
- Additional remarks: Unaccompanied children should be informed regarding the safety of tap water as drinkable water, where applicable.
Good practice with regards to the provision of beverages
✓ provide warm beverages in addition to the potable water.