Review by Oksana Ivatsova and Alona Arischenko on the project «Think Human» (Greece):
The Greek NGO «System and G» within the framework of Erasmus + during 17 – 24 of April on the island Lesbos (Greece) have conducted the first of three planned meetings of the project «Think Human».
The project aimed at understanding the crisis caused by forced migration, searching methods and tools to help refugees / IDPs and promoting their integration in the host community.
Among the 24 participants from 12 countries (France, Germany, Sweden, Macedonia, Greece, Georgia, Hungary, Turkey, Egypt, Jordan, Latvia) were also representatives of the CEI (Sumy, Ukraine).
To get more information about the work of local NGOs participants met with volunteers who are working with refugees and visited the Support Center “Mosaik” where refugees have an opportunity to study English, visit dancing classes, sew bags from the life jackets in which refugees come to Lesvos by boat, also receive psychological assistance and help in process documents. The participants visited one of the refugee camp “Kara Tepe” that houses about 700 refugees from Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan. This is a municipal camp, but it is also funded by the EU. In this camp refugees receive integrated help, and first of all help in preparing the documents (it takes from 9 to 12 months) for further travel. Refugees’ aim is to reach a better life in Germany and Sweden, where social standards and favorable conditions for integration are higher.
It was very interesting to find out the specifics of the situation with refugees in various countries. For example, Hungary, Macedonia and Jordan have closed their borders to refugees and in Georgia there are only 5 Syrians with the status of refugees.
Representatives of Sweden, Jordan and Egypt raised the issue of women discrimination, for example, Syrians and Jordanians (sexual violence, early marriage of girls, murder, deprivation of opportunities to study) and how this specificity is reflected in the process of integration into the host community.
The next training session will be held on 10-17 June in Greece, in Athens. The participants will share practical tools for working with refugees and have an opportunity to practice in the centers of integration.