“Our constant goal is to continue to be a catalyst for promoting the values of open and just societies”
Just 5 years after SolidarityNow was founded, the organization assesses its accomplishments that sum up to a great number: more than 300,000 vulnerable people have been supported through the organization’s actions and programs. These are people we have met, helped and empowered in many ways through the diversity of free services we provide across the country.
“The end of 2018 comes to reward SolidarityNow for its consistent efforts during its 5-year action. And this reward is more than the 300,000 people, whom we have supported practically and effectively to regain their lives and improve their safety and well-being; whether they were refugees to whom we offered accommodation and thus decent living conditions, mothers and children who needed protection, or unemployed Greeks whom we helped to find a job”, notes Stelios Zavvos, the Chairman of SolidarityNow and continues: “SolidarityNow’s goal for the future is to continue to be a catalyst for promoting the values of open and just societies and defending the human rights of the most vulnerable”.
“For us, the 300,000 people who benefited directly from our programs are not a number“, says Antigone Lyberaki, SolidarityNow General Manager. “Every day, along with these 300,000 people, we have shared worries and fears but also happiness and excitement – what keeps us together is respect and solidarity. For us, an open society of tolerance and equality, requires the empowerment of all its members. Everyone must be able to make decisions about their lives. That’s what we do in SolidarityNow: we empower people to become independent, defending their own free will”.
Solidarity Centers, Open to All
The organization’s core activity is the operation of the two Solidarity Centers in Athens and Thessaloniki as well as the Blue Refugee Center in Thessaloniki that has expanded SolidarityNow’s actions towards refugees, migrants and asylum seekers from 2016.
- 63,000 people –Greeks, refugees, migrants- benefited from the services provided by the Athens Solidarity Center
- 26,700 people benefited from the services provided by the Thessaloniki Solidarity Center
- 6,100 people -refugees, migrants and asylum seekers- benefited from the Blue Refugee Center in Thessaloniki.
Shelter -and more- for more than 7,000 people in need
From 2016 to today, the organization has provided shelter and support to over 7,000 refugees and asylum seekers. SolidarityNow’s goal is to ensure that refugees and asylum seekers have access to the basic human right of housing and decent living through the implementation of innovative accommodation programs. The long-term goal is to improve their daily lives, empower them, make them strong enough to exercise their rights and take on the responsibilities of a new life. This becomes feasible by designing appropriate activities to empower beneficiaries; activities that contribute to their smooth social integration.
Education Matters | The Lifelong Learning Program
For SolidarityNow, education is a fundamental right for all and the implementation of educational activities is an integral part of the organization’s programs. Educational activities target both children and adults. During the last year (2017-2018), we mention indicatively that 5.900 educational activities were carried out in the framework of the accommodation program and 2,000 lessons were provided to adults and children in the Blue Refugee Center in Thessaloniki.
We give the floor to our beneficiaries!
“My anger suffocated me. Today, I share my story and receive significant help”, Sofia, 51 years old from Greece, beneficiary of the Psychological Counseling Service at the Athens Solidarity Center
“I give my credits to SolidarityNow for its Greek language lessons. I learned many new words!”., Haider, 17 years old from Pakistan, attends the Greek language courses held at Thessaloniki Solidarity Center
“I want my children to go to school; to learn Greek – I want to do more than I did”, Sayeed, 27 years old, member of the Rohingya community from Myanmar, lives in Greece along with his wife and children, as a beneficiary of the accommodation program
“This diploma is my birthday present!”, Sana, 22 years old from Pakistan, beneficiary of the Blue Refugee Center in Thessaloniki, she attended the manicure-pedicure seminar
“I wanted to acquire new skills! I am a professor of Italian, but because my job cannot support my living, I need to do other jobs too”, Theodora, from Greece, beneficiary of the educational programs, graduated from the IT Essentials seminar organized with the CISCO Networking Academy