Cross-border social work

As a member of the network International Social Service (ISS), the International Social Service Germany (ISD) is the liaison office between German and foreign independent and public social work agencies, youth and social authorities as well as guardianship and family courts in Germany and abroad. 

International cooperation

Within the scope of requests received from Germany, ISD works primarily on behalf of courts and authorities. In the case of questions and requests from abroad, ISD in turn asks German specialised agencies for cooperation. Possible constellations include obtaining social reports on the situation of children and families, forwarding child protection alerts and facilitating contact and access between parents and their children across borders. 

Communication within the ISS network takes place in German, English, Spanish and French. The ISS working partners not only provide linguistic but also specific cultural translation, as they are familiar with the cultural circumstances, working methods and framework conditions of the social welfare and child protection authorities in the respective country.

In 2023, ISD dealt with 218 cases relating to various countries abroad.

Individual case work

As part of our casework, we pursue a child welfare-oriented and interdisciplinary approach. In doing so, we utilise both the social work and legal expertise of our team as well as our specialist knowledge of international conventions, European regulations and applicable German law. We also focus on cultural particularities in the countries involved and actively integrate them into our case work.

Please contact us in advance to discuss a possible request. On a case by case basis, the applicable law must be identified, whether a working partner of ISS exists in the country involved and which options are available to this working partner. Funding for the working partners is provided by government funds and donations, among others, which means that some services provided by the working partners may incur fees for the client. You can find more information on our information sheet on cooperation as well as during our consultations.