Lockdown in Moria 2.0
All our projects were challenged by the Pandemic. How to offer education when everyone is confined at home and within the camp? Stand By Me Lesvos rapidly accommodated from this crisis: first of all we started to support the self-organized schools within the camp. Secondly, online classes were settled thanks to our Distance Learning Program, free and available for all refugees.
Additionally, the ongoing classes on the ground are occurring with less students and with the respect of barrier gestures.
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. Stand By Me Lesvos support Moria Corona Awareness Team, Moria White Helmets and Moria Academia to organize themselves and provided consistent and sustainable support to the self-organized groups as well as their members.
MCAT distributing flyers, masks and hand disinfect, May 2021
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 walking distance from the overcrowded camp.
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While international NGOs come and go, we live here in Lesvos. Our commitment is for the long term, focusing on three main targets: Education, Empowerment and Integration. We collaborate with Greek locals, camp residents and international team members, because we can only face this situation standing together.
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Stand by me Lesvos believes that “refugee participation and self-management are fundamental, assuming a respect for the capabilities of refugees and the belief that, as human beings, they have the right to control their own lives” (UNHCR). We are therefore engaging in “help to self-help”: supporting self-organizations inside the camp, including our partners Moria Corona Awareness Team, Moria White Helmets and Moria Academia. After all, what is education worth if not to use one’s prior knowledge?
We constantly communicate with camp residents, who best understand their own needs and therefore create well-functioning solutions. As an organization deeply rooted within the fabrics of the island, we closely cooperate with the municipality to support islanders in need. We are standing by Lesvos as independent and equal partners, but we need the EU to act.
Under regular conditions, we provide education opportunities in different area, but during the corona crisis we had to undertake completely new tasks. Refugees came to us and asked for help, so we are very glad to be able to support these self-organized teams in Lesvos. Please consider supporting them and their work with a donation through us.
Moria Corona Awareness Team
Moria White Helmets
In Greek we have a word: Xenos
It is a word with many meanings: stranger, outsider, friend and guest. The deepest meaning of the word can be understood as guest-friend and is a central part of how Greeks understand hospitality, it is part of how we at Stand By Me Lesvos see refugees, as guests, as friends, as people who maybe in transit, but where there is also a reciprocity, a give and take between the two. Be a part of Stand By Me Lesvos by supporting us.
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