Study visits in Athens, and the team had the chance to visit different actors within the community intervening on the refugee crisis. A new youth center operated by British youth workers, a UNHCR funded local NGO and a squat. Three different approach, working towards the same aim with different philosophies and approaches but all with a solid basis on why we are here, why we intervene and how we do that.
Study visits would be tourism without reflection, sharing and then reflecting more! Pnyka, where democracy was first exercised in ancient Greece seemed like the perfect spot to go through the day and give it sense and meaning.
Different emotions, opinions, views were shared finding differences and similarities in the way the different “spaces” we visited operate and intervene.
It is not an issue of who is doing things and trying to identify the right way. We thought it was more of an issue how one can learn from each other. Interesting approaches to management with co-management, and lack or evident hierarchies, different levels of involvement of the target groups, different challenges such as the obstacle of cultural understanding, financial and funding difficulties, networking and more.
It seems that the conclusion can only be summarized in the thought of things that seemed important and things that gave value to the intervention. Inclusiveness in decision making, co-living, creativity in resources finding, diminishing the cultural gap by creating common experiences, importance of mixed populations in activities (locals and target groups), and finally…. to be there as a worker, volunteer or a neighbor with the “heart at the right place”.