Location and general information
The bombing in Afrin and Ghouta in Syria, and the escalating violence in parts of Afghanistan is driving people to flee. According to the UNHCR, 21,887 people have crossed the Mediterranean since the beginning of the year, one-third of whom have arrived on Greek islands. The number of new arrivals was 33% higher in the first four months of 2018 than during the same period in 2017. The emergency reception centres for refugees and migrants are overcrowded. At the same time, national organisations and NGOs are forced to close shelters and programmes for the youngest of those affected by war, conflict, migration and displacement because of administrative bottlenecks. Homelessness among asylum seekers has become an issue because of inadequate procedures which do not guarantee pre-registration.
In 2017, Terre des Hommes provided safe accommodation for 361 vulnerable families and young people. It currently manages 19 apartments in Ioannina. As part of the same protection package, Terre des Hommes has provided legal counselling and representation to over 1,250 refugees and migrants, and mental health and psychological services to more than 1,500. In addition, access to medical services has been ensured in 70% of all cases.
Terre des Hommes will continue its mission of supporting Greek authorities and civil society by assisting with the emergency reception of refugees and migrants, supporting their effective integration and helping to build integrated and sustainable child protection systems.
The accommodation programme run for nine months, from April to December 2018, and will be implemented in Thessaloníki and Ioannina.
- To expand the existing accommodation programme.
- To provide the bare minimum of accommodation and cash.
- To guarantee a range of protection services, including daily social work, protection activities, legal counselling and interpreting.
- To ensure children have access to adequate child protection services.
The project aims to increase access to safe accommodation and social care in Ioannina and Thessaloníki by expanding its existing arrangements to make 400 beds available in northern Greece. The beneficiaries in Ioannina will have access to a large community centre, which will be the venue for cooking events, language classes, Greek film nights, discussion groups, arts and craft events and child-friendly spaces.
In this way, Terre des Hommes will be supporting vulnerable children with caregivers by providing them with accommodation, and giving older unaccompanied minors (males aged 16–17) somewhere where they can live independently.
Furthermore, the project will focus on psychological support for refugee children, young people and their parents by using games, structured creative work, informal learning, theatre, sport, music, reading and any other activities that will improve self-esteem, trust, cooperation, well-being, safety and life skills.
Terre des Hommes is the only remaining international child-focused NGO in northern Greece. The housing programme is essential to ensure urgent action to protect migrant children, prevent child exploitation and provide humanitarian aid to children and their families.