Communicates between boats, coast guard and land support. There are other similarly named groups, but this is the one people on Lesvos work with.
Guidelines for crossing the Aegean, with emergency protocols in many languages
Major camps, services and safe landing spots marked.
A Facebook group for discussing next efforts and sharing experiences.
Do you like public speaking? This Facebook group can help you arrange opportunities to talk about your experience.
IRC/Mercy Corps website with info in English / Arabic / Farsi. Covers Serbia, Macedonia, Greece (Athens, Lesvos and Kos).
Nicely designed and mobile-friendly. Good internal links to legal details, news, communication tools, etc.
Also available as an app.
Suggestions for ongoing work at home, with local organizations or through remote support for Greece-based groups.
Lesvos-experienced PR pros' advice for getting the word out.
ICRC's missing-persons team.
Compiled by PR pros with Lesvos experience--to help you get your message across.
Key phrases to help Arabic speakers to communicate with Greeks.
Assembled by the Child Protection Sub-Working Group (CPSWG): NGOs, UN agencies and
other partners on Lesvos.
Short answer: respect.
Advisers available via Skype in different languages, depending on the day -- see schedule for days and times. Downloads as PDF. Current as of 8 August 2016.
Collected wisdom and ideas
Giant compilation of phrases in many languages. In a Google Sheet; better used on a laptop than a phone.
Excellent compilation of wisdom and resources for maintaining a healthy outlook on Lesvos and after returning home.
Link to folder continuing information on the asylum process in (so far) Greece, Germany and Switzerland. Larger PDFs inside. (Current as of February 2016.)
Daily updates on the situation, from Turkey up through the Balkans. Also at https://medium.com/@AreYouSyrious.
Quick short updates about the situation. Very practical. Multiple languages. From Internews.
For sending international money wires with lower fees. Money earned through this referral link will be donated to refugee efforts.
Schedule for buses around Mytilene town (including buses to Moria and to the airport). Direct link to a PDF file. In Greek only.
Moria schedule is line 15 (weekdays), line 3 (next section, for Saturdays) and line 1 (last section, for Sundays).
Guidelines for volunteers and refugees, in English, Arabic, Farsi and Greek.
Compiled by w2eu
English language site for buses across the island. This link goes to the interactive schedule page.
Facebook group for discussion
Illustrated. In color. Prepared by Boat Refugee Foundation.
Collected by the Elena organization. List of legal aid groups and other NGOs offering legal support.
Updated with regular needs. Use Google Translate. Maintained by https://www.facebook.com/RefugeesWelcomeGR/.
General umbrella Facebook group. Ask questions here if you can't find answers at region-specific groups.
FB page for ride sharing.
Handy photos! Remember: emergency blankets do not *warm* a person; they only keep them from getting colder.
From the World Health Organization
FB page to share accommodation.
Learn the difference between mild and severe hypothermia.
Updated as frequently as possible. Best to subscribe to the UNHCR newsletter to be sure of getting most current details.
Sheet of common icons for nonverbal communication -- just point! (Different version, simpler, in color: http://bit.ly/lesvolcoloricons)
News bulletins in Arabic, after the usual Greek news broadcasts on ERT1 (Greek: EPT1) at 16:00, 19:00 and 22:00. Stream online.
All the spots on it (shopping, hotels, camps, beaches, etc) are also under 'Places' on this site.
Click each point for more info (phone numbers, bus schedules, etc). You can hide layers that aren't necessary, and save the whole thing to your phone (star to save under My Maps).
Sign up to receive email bulletins about various topics. (Anyone can sign up--don't be put off by the questions about what organization you're with.)
Awesome Aegean! Recommended refugee-friendly shops and other services on the islands, and some around Athens and Thessaloniki. Support local business!
With Greek at the bottom.
As of October 2016, single best one-stop legal info point for refugees in Greece.
Practical bulletins about asylum, relocation and reunification procedures, in Arabic, Farsi, Kurdish, and some in Pashto and Urdu.
Pre-registration flowchart from UNHCR is here ("Legal pathways flowchart"), with helpful color-coding.
"Preparing for your asylum interview" section, including a long list of questions that may be asked.
How to safely and effectively distribute food, clothes, etc. Developed for Idomeni but applies anywhere.
For easiest searching and orientation. All the spots on it are also under 'Places' on this site.
Blog post by Gillian Seely
Higher waves, fewer boats...usually.
Coordinate with the group you're working with to add signature and registered charity/NGO letterhead, then file with your airline.
With a bit of Greek at the bottom!
Dispelling rumors, one at a time. The newsletter is circulated weekly, on Fridays.
Email subscription at http://eepurl.com/bMT3L5 .
Some sites require this; others don't. Confirm with the group you will be working with.
Public folder for all signs, phrase lists and other tools for communicating with refugees. (Most developed on the island of Lesvos, so some are very location-specific.)
Numbers are based on police reports, largely from number of people *registered* (not necessarily arrived).
Print for use in warehouses, or when preparing donations to send. Designed by Cyril Romann.
Developed by Stichting Bootvluchteling and UNHCR -- the best procedure for calm and safety.
Police registration for groups and individual volunteers is required, and can be done via email before you arrive, or at the Ministry of the Aegean in person.
**If link is not working (site goes down periodically), the form is here: http://bit.ly/lesvolregistration
Return to email@example.com**
Want to volunteer on Lesvos? This is all the information you need to get started--and plenty more after that.
Best practices. Every volunteer should read these. Links to the main Lesvos info doc.
What to say to claim asylum in Greece. Note that this guide is somewhat out of date--it was *not* written for the current situation, and is not totally accurate in some spots. But for an overview, and in the absence of other details, it is a helpful starting point.
Basic info to get started, with brief profiles of camps and lists of which camps need which language skills.
Facebook group where volunteers on the ground can request one-off donations from people at home, to buy supplies for refugees.
Dig down for lots of maps and reports.
Good overview of what to expect as a volunteer -- mental prep, rather than logistical. Compiled by Campfire Innovation.
In-depth analysis of the refugee situation, following the model of Syria Deeply.
Compiled documents for Athens volunteers. Please read first if you are headed to Athens.
Facebook group with a pool of translators available to help with projects in many languages.
How to calm down a volatile situation, how to soothe angry people.
This main document provides all the basic info for volunteering at Katsika.
Facebook group for coordination
Facebook group for coordination.
Facebook group for coordination.
Facebook group for sharing information in Spanish for volunteers
Facebook group for coordinating placement of people with medical skills.
For registration of *groups*, via the ministry in Thessaloniki
Facebook for sharing rooms and rides in Thessaloniki and around (formerly for Idomeni area only)
Basic orientation document, with work tips and more.
Thessaloniki and northern camps and services. *For general orientation only. For the most current collection of pins, see the Places directory on this site.*
collected by Anastasia Shepherd
For a list of all shopping pins in Athens (dynamic, on this site), see www.bit.ly/GVAthensShopPins, then click 'show results on map' to create a Google Map.
main coordinating group on Chios
In the Lesvos volunteer doc, a detailed packing list (some items are just for winter).
info doc with orientation for volunteers
From this site: all Chios map pins on a Google Map.
Sign-up sheet for volunteering on Chios
Collection of PDFs listing organizations providing support, in a variety of categories (food, Greek language lessons, psychological support, accommodation, education, legal and medical support). Allegedly in multiple languages, but currently (mid-July 2016) seeing only English. All info was collected April-June; not certain of plans to keep updated.
What refugees are discussing -- good way of seeing current problems, issues, concerns at camps.
Also available in Greek: https://newsthatmoves.org/el/category/in-the-loop/
Maintained by Bienvenidos Refugiados en Grecia.
In addition to the Volunteers Needed listings here on the site, also search the Teams directory by 'medical / health care.' And join and post in the Facebook group Medics for Greece, http://www.facebook.com/groups/135609506795670/
Speakers of Arabic, Farsi, Kurdish, Urdu and more are needed all over. Many of the camps are a majority of one nationality. Please see www.bit.ly/howtovolunteeringreece (work by skill set) for a chart of camps organized by majority language.
Also of course see the Volunteers Needed section of this site for specific calls (check the 'language' box when searching) and search the Teams directory for other organisations that need translators but which may not be actively recruiting.
Short answer: yes. As for where...it's hard to say in advance, as the situation changes frequently. Please prep by reading http://bit.ly/howtovolunteeringreece. You can safely commit to buying a ticket to either Athens or Thessaloniki, then adding on tickets to specific destinations later.
Reach out to various organizations, but understand that administrative support is limited, and you may not get a response immediately if your planned trip date is more than a few weeks away. It's stressful, we know...but trust that plans will fall into place and you will be useful in the end.
There are so many talented volunteers with great skills--but very few admins, and no one with the capacity to sift through a huge list of volunteers and their skills and trip dates.* This is why we leave it up to you to read the Volunteers Needed listings and browse the Teams directory to see what groups are working where, and decide which might be a good fit for you.
(*Group coordinators: We don't mean to underestimate you; we're just basing this on past experience. If a volunteer database would be useful to you, please let us know: firstname.lastname@example.org.)
Collected wisdom from the Immigrant and Refugee Support Group in Athens on Facebook.
Dynamic list of all Athens pins from this site. Click 'show results on map' to see a Google Map.
All pins from this site in Western Greece on a Google Map.
From this site: dynamic Google Map of all Lesvos shopping locations
From this very site: all Athens shopping pins in Athens, on a Google Map.
From this site: all northern Greece shops on a Google Map.
Compiled by major aid agencies with guidelines for volunteers to provide mental-health support to refugees.
Provides "advice on protecting and supporting the mental health and psychosocial wellbeing of refugees, asylum-seekers and migrants in Europe. It describes key principles and appropriate interventions."
Link leads to website with links to a downloadable report in numerous languages (English, Arabic, Croatian, German, Greek, French, Italian, Portuguese, Slovenian, Spanish). Click further to download PDF.
Yes, definitely! This whole response has been driven by regular people with energy and time to commit. See the "volunteer starter kit" page on this site, particularly the main Google doc.
Facebook group for coordinating room / hotel sharing and arranging rides and rental-car shares.
Click over for a one-page feed of organisations working on Lesvos. (Not totally up-to-date. --Sept 6, 2016.)
Click over for a one-page feed of organisations working on all the island *except* Lesvos.
Click for one-page feed of major organisations working in central Greece (Athens and beyond).
Click over for a one-page feed of the organisations working around Thessaloniki and into eastern Greece.
Click over for a one-page feed of groups working in western Greece and in the Peloponnese.
This disinformation and propaganda on Syria takes three distinct forms. The first is the demonization of the Syrian leadership. The second is the romanticization of the opposition. The third form involves attacking anyone questioning the preceding characterizations.
[posted by Thierry]
What is the Syrian death toll now? 400,000? Less? More?
[posted by Thierry]
In Greek, English, Arabic, Dari
التحدث عن معاناة الاجئيين
"Boring and nerdy" -- you were warned :) -- "but a really reliable informative look into the problems surrounding relocation, how it's progressing and how the Greek Asylum Service is functioning behind the scenes."
For refugees who don't read, RefuComm maintains this helpful collection of videos. Always expanding!
Translators on call via video.
Find your appointment time using your registration number.
If that fails, consult the entire list of appointments, through April 2017, sorted by registration number: http://bit.ly/greeceapptlist
Set aside a little time to read this gorgeous essay--it's about a lot of things, but very key are her details about how individual experience gets flattened in news coverage in translation.
[posted by Zora]
A central player of the region is mostly overlooked. With a $30 Billion arms budget and US/UK backing, Saudi Arabia plays a key role in destabilising its neighbours.
City bus app (download for Android, iOS, Windows) is highly recommended.
For buses from Thessaloniki to surrounding towns
Compiled by Sumita Shah. Instructions for (highly recommended) procedure of getting official clearance to work with children.
The United States destabilized Yemen with a massive killing spree known as a “drone war.” The United States armed Saudi Arabia to bomb Yemen with jets, supplied the jets, supplied the bombs (and cluster bombs), refueled the jets midair, provided the targeting information, provided the cover at the United Nations, and deployed its ships to the coast of Yemen as part of its effort to achieve U.S./Saudi power in Yemen through mass murder and devastation. If one group or another or nobody in Yemen fired some harmless shots at a U.S. ship the outcome is the same: zero legal or moral or practical justification to continue or escalate the killing, and zero logic in calling such escalation “defensive.”
Robert Fisk on the motives behind the invasion of Mosul
Syria’s army and Hezbollah and Iranian allies are preparing for a massive invasion by thousands of Isis fighters who will be driven out of Iraq when Mosul falls. The real purpose behind the much-trumpeted US-planned “liberation” of the Iraqi city, the Syrian military suspect, is to swamp Syria with the hordes of Isis fighters who will flee their Iraqi capital in favour of their “mini-capital” of Raqqa inside Syria itself.
Facebook group for coordinating hotel and room shares and transport.
Right here on this very site.
PDFs in all languages: http://w2eu.info/greece.en/articles/greece-guide.en.html
This guide includes a whole chapter on the special situation on the islands for all refugees arrived since March 20, 2016, in addition to a larger section for those on the mainland, plus detailed information on family reunification and relocation, plus a lot of useful contacts mainly in Athens and Thessaloniki.
Monitors treatment of refugees forcibly returned to Turkey. Contact for legal support if needed; click 'contact form' for link to secure browser form.
Google Drive of materials for teaching English and German materials, courtesy of No Border School. Includes Farsi-English and Arabic-English materials.
App for coordinating aid shipments.
Open-source tool for managing warehouse stock
See this post on FB for instructions on how to join various WhatsApp groups (including translation ones)
Site that compares money transfer. Not tested.
Link to Facebook post listing major organizations and help centers in Athens. Many are also listed in the Places directory on this site (search 'LGBT').
In English, Arabic and Farsi. Prevent fires!
FB page where Lesvos boat arrivals are posted. (May not be totally complete.)
This article is the first in a two-part series of one Western journalist’s journey to Aleppo, a city ravaged by an insurgency supported by the United States, NATO member states, and their allies in the Gulf states and Israel.
New information and Co-ordination Group for Athens assisting:
1) volunteers on the ground with guidance, hints and tips on volunteering in Athens
2) new and existing volunteers with information on where to volunteer in Athens and surrounding areas
3) with distribution to squats, camps and shelters from Ellinikon Warehouse and other major suppliers/donors in Athens.
4) providing information, help and support to individuals and organisations to connect vulnerable refugees with housing and other urgent and immediate needs (such as access to shelters, food, clothing, medical, psychological, lgbtq support)
Refugee-staffed call center, based in Thessaloniki.
+302311180903 (Mon - Fri 10.00 - 16.00)
Was being updated weekly--but seems to have stalled (early Feb 2017). Generally matches UNHCR numbers. Map also shows which medical teams are working where.
--camp locations are imprecise (don't use for navigation; use pins here in Places directory or www.bit.ly/greececamps).
--individual camp populations are not necessarily up to date; every camp does not report every week (applies to UNHCR data too).
--total population listed here does not include people in apartments, etc. For total refugee population in Greece, see UNHCR numbers (copied to www.bit.ly/campsmapsheet).
Spreadsheet (feeds to map at www.bit.ly/campsmap) showing population numbers, copied from weekly "summary statement of refugee flows." Easier than finding on Greek government site or digging through UNHCR site. Note that not all camps report every week, so data on specific camps may not be accurate at any given time.
If you need regular transportation from Thessaloniki city center/ to nearby camps, safe and quick by car, just drop me line. - Can host 1-3 people for car. Only for fuel cost :)
whatsupp/viber: +306937981241 (upon request and availability)
Facebook group for organizing aid shipments to Greece. Join if you will be sending large amounts.
From this very site: all warehouses in the Places directory, pinned on a map.
Map of the days and locations of the street markets ("Laiki") where affordable prices for fruits and vegetables can be found, especially later in the day (2-4 pm) when stands are starting to close.
Also has dairy vending machines and supermarkets.
With no end in sight for the war in Syria, the Obama administration continues to approach the conflict in a way that is prolonging the fighting. As it pursues its stated goal of removing the Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad from power, the Obama administration is implementing a policy that keeps the Syrian regime and the many different opposition forces in the country locked in a deadly stalemate.
5-unit, 2-hour free online course that covers basic communication skills, legal details, etc. (Not yet tested; posting link for info purposes only.)
The official guidelines used by big NGOs -- it specifies things like how many toilets per number of people, etc. Independent volunteers don't need to know all of this, but it can help you with general jargon and standards.
There's also an online course that walks you through the handbook: http://www.sphereproject.org/learning/e-learning-course/