Founded in 2017, SBML has spent the last years fully integrating into the refugee community in the camp and learning how to best support the needs of people from every community of Lesvos.
Whether it be a project run for the local residents of Lesvos or a project for Refugee Camp residents, all projects are partnered with and run by community members. We see our role as a link to access to resources, to enable self-help groups and to empower communities.
Greek Class in our old Academia, April 2019
Founded in 2017 by local Greek citizens of Lesvos Island, Stand By Me Lesvos is a different type of Non Profit. With little funds we have created a safe, positive space, where local Greeks, refugees and international team members are all working side by side, just in the camp. Manager is Michael Aivaliotis adult educator, education coordinator and 12 years volunteer.
While international NGOs come and go, we live here in Lesvos. Our commitment is for the long term, focusing on three main targets: Education, Environment and Empowerment. We collaborate with Greek locals and camp residents because we can only face this situation standing together.
What We Do
We are teachers, this is our job and our main offer in and out the camp. In the camp we have an education space with sever classrooms and everyday, all day, we offer classes languages (Greek, English, German, Farsi) art, music, math, history and kindergarten. But it is also a community space, for meetings, women activities, craft workshop and cinema. We believe education is first priority for people who lost everything and start their life again.
Secondly, online classes were settled thanks to our Distance Learning Program, free and available for all refugees. In addition, during this year of coronavirus restrictions and concern, asylum seekers had to manage on their own in terms of prevention, health rules and waste management. The name of the school is Mobile Academy.
Stand By Me Lesvos support asylum seekers to organize themselves and provided consistent and sustainable support to the self-organized groups as well as their members.
By the start there were few things we were doing because nothing was in our hand, we were alone. But slowly, when we got some support, when we got some contacts, we improved the Awareness Project, we had new team members and other projects like the Plastic Bottle Recycling Project.
Omid, MCAT Coordinator
In the last days we organized workshops and distributed Christmas presents to all the children of the camp, just like to our kids, to have the opportunity to feel the love and the celebrations of...
I have been in the volunteering sphere for 12 years - this time period has been enough for me to make an account. At the same time, I’ve been in the education field, occupying various positions of...
I completed 12 years of experience in volunteering and managing educational structures for adult immigrants and refugees. I viewed the evolution of the situation in all its phases: Pagani, Pikpa,...