Today marks the first day of International Mediation Week which aims to promote the importance of family mediation in parental abduction cases.  

Recent research by Missing Children Europe revealed that most mediation cases resulted in a mediated agreement (45%) or a partial agreement (45%), demonstrating the added value of mediation during family separation cases.  

International family mediation has proven to be a more efficient and less conflictual procedure than going to court. 

Furthermore, Family Mediation remains a solution that is not sufficiently used in Europe and parents are not always aware that family mediation is an option to them.  

Going to court seems to be the most obvious solution to resolve family conflicts, but this experience can be very traumatic for the child, who is caught in the middle, and for the parents, who often end up in a legal custody battle for years.  

This week, Missing Children Europe and its members will raise awareness to parents across Europe about three major benefits to family mediation through the #HearMeOut campaign.  

“When parents are separating they often go directly to the courts to resolve matters for the children. Too often they are left disappointed with the outcome of the court’s decision and the children get caught in their conflict. Family mediation has many benefits for both – the parents and the children. But, despite its success rate, mediation remains a solution that is not sufficiently used in Europe. Through the #HearMeOut campaign, we are reaching out to parents to inform them that family mediation is sustainable, cheaper and faster than court proceedings”. Greg Kostka, Project Officer for International Abduction & Cross Border Mediation 

You can learn more about the #HearMeOut campaign here.

Note to editor:  

Mediation is voluntary and confidential. As a result, mediation agreements tend to work more in the long run because both parents find it is a fair solution. It is also more cost and time effective than court litigation. 

Missing Children Europe is the European Federation for Missing and Sexually Exploited Children, representing 31 grassroot NGOs in 26 European countries. Missing Children Europe coordinates the Cross-Border Family Mediators Network that consists of over 200 trained family mediators who help prevent and resolve cross-border family conflicts including parental abduction. Find out more about cross-border family mediation here. 

Contact:  Greg Kostka at