SolidarityNow, amid COVID-19, creates new innovative training tools responding to the needs of vulnerable populations

Giorgos Moutafis for SolidarityNow

The organization adjusts its programs and continues to support people living in refugee sites. 

“Readiness, Creativity, Teamwork”: that is the motto driving the SolidarityNow efforts to continue its activities so as to respond to the intensive needs aroused in the times of COVID-19, for the people living in refugee sites. In addition to its presence in the field, the organization created and functions a series of new educational, entertainment and informational tools.

The “Child and Family Support Hubs” program is implemented by SolidarityNow with the support of UNICEF, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and EU funding, at 14 refugee camp sites in Greece. Since the beginning of the health crisis, field teams providing daily legal, psychosocial, and educational support, have created several alternative training tools for the services they offer, in order to maintain their relationship with the beneficiaries. Specifically, SolidarityNow teams undertook the following activities:

  • created a digital podcast training channel entitled SolidarityNow rings a bell!, where children and adults can listen to a series of educational and entertaining messages
  • at the refugee sites of Ritsona and Malakasa, the teachers shifted the weekly delivery of printed exercises into an online format in order for adult and minor students to continue their lessons
  • at the Blue Refugee Center of SolidarityNow, in Thessaloniki, teachers continue the online lessons with the teenager students who have access to digital platforms
  • created 14 groups via Facebook (Fb groups) – one for each of the women’s community existing in each refugee site – through which women can communicate with the SolidarityNow specialized staff, seek advice on issues that concern them, spend their time creatively or even ask for dedicated assistance.

“The crisis caused by the coronavirus in everyone’s life, along with the initial shock and fear it triggered, led us all, and especially our teams working in the field, to become more inventive. Our goal was not to let the measures of social distancing lead to alienation, especially of our most vulnerable fellow human beings. With the help of technology, we have discovered alternative but also creative ways to continue our lessons and group activities in an online public ‘space’, while we have tirelessly continued to inform and provide psychosocially support to the most vulnerable, both remotely but also face to face when allowed, taking the necessary precautions”, says Christiana Kyrkou, Head of SolidarityNow’s Program at the refugee sites.

* The Child Friendly Support Hubs project is implemented by SolidarityNow with the support of UNICEF and IOM Greece and funded by the European Commission.


“SolidarityNow Rings a Bell!” is the New Educational Program that Invites Students to a Different Classroom!

In the midst of COVID-19, SolidarityNow launches a series of educational and entertainment podcasts and offers online courses

Athens, April 29, 2020

In the time of COVID-19, SolidarityNow is steadily continuing its operations on the side of the most vulnerable groups and creating new, alternative educational tools to provide lessons to both adult refugees and children.

The non-formal education offered by the organization with the support of UNICEF and IOM, at 14 open Accommodation Structures in Greece, has temporarily switched mode of operations to ensure the health and protection of the population living in camps and reduce the risks of spreading the virus.

SolidarityNow’s educational team had to overcome many challenges such as the fact that it was not possible for students to be physically present in the classroom. With the aim of being “as close” as possible to children and their parents, SolidarityNow created a series of educational and entertainment podcasts/recorded messages. The name of this new educational tool is: “SolidarityNow Rings a Bell!”.

“Even under these challenging circumstances of physical distancing, we wanted to get as close as it gets to children and their parents and support them and spend time together creatively,” explain Vasso Katsomaliari and Domniki Georgopoulou, Coordinators of the organization’s educational activities, and continue: “Through this creative way of teaching, as SolidarityNow’s educational team, we help children and parents living in refugee camps to adjust to a new reality. At the same time, we motivate them to continue their education, but also suggest interesting ways of spending creative time together. The success of distance-learning depends on many different factors, but most of all, on the continuation of the relationship between teachers and students”.

The specialized teachers’ team of the organization, having cultivated a constructive relationship with the children, designed an educational tool that meets the specific needs and preferences of this group.

So, the bell… rings and familiar voices – the voices of their teachers – convey to children educational and entertaining “messages” in various languages. Fairy tales, songs, games, current news as well as many other topics that are intended to creatively engage the children and their parents.

  • You can listen to the podcasts at this link:


* The Child Friendly Support Hubs project is implemented by SolidarityNow with the support of UNICEF and IOM Greece and funded by the European Commission.

Sky School is launching its courses

Sky School, in partnership with #SolidarityNow, is preparing to launch a second set of courses for displaced learners between 16 and 25 years old: 1) Ethical Leadership & 2) Living Peace. The language of instruction is English and we ask for roughly a B1 level. Each course combines 6 hours per week of in-class time and 4 hours of independent online work for a total duration of 10 weeks (up until mid April).

Courses will start in the week of 3rd February and will take place in the center of Athens.

Applications are open and can be found here:

The deadline is 30th January.

Read the related material:

Ethical Leadership

Living Peace

Mathematical Dictionary

The Mathematical Dictionary contains general mathematical terminology and specialised vocabulary of Algebra and Geometry and it is the starting point for getting assimilated into the world of Mathematics, as well as for putting the knowledge into practice through exercises.

It does not merely cite the translation or definition of mathematical terms from Greek into Turkish, Farsi, Urdu and English, but, at the same time, also tries to include all possible cases in which a math term may appear in a school environment. In this way:

  • a more complete description of the language of Mathematics in Greek is achieved
  • the mathematical terminology is presented in a simple and pleasant way and the concepts are clarified with the help of images and drawings, while also defining the meaning of symbols and math types, serving in this way, students’ learning needs
  • the confusion that would be caused to the teacher by the sequencing of meanings of a term without explanations and clarifications is avoided
  • a large gap in the teaching of Mathematics and Sciences in the Greek educational system is being covered, especially in the context of the integration of newly arrived refugees and immigrants and their access to the inalienable human right of Education
For a child to love the Sciences and to start their journey in the world of mathematical logic, the understanding must be done in their mother tongue, with the use of a tool that can contribute efficiently to the gradual building of their mathematical knowledge.

Download the dictionary as pdf, here

The Mathematical Dictionary was created by SolidarityNow as part of the project “Comprehensive Service Provision for the Integration and Well-Being of Refugee Children and Families”, supported by UNICEF with funding from the European Union Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations

(DG-ECHO), and in collaboration with METAdrasi.
METAdrasi realised this dictionary as part of the project “Interpretation for Education of Refugee and Migrant Children in Greece”, supported by UNICEF with funding from the European Union Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (DG-ECHO).
The texts were translated in Arabic by SolidarityNow and edited by METAdrasi, while the translations in English, Farsi, Urdu and Turkish were realised by METAdrasi.

“Here I Go!” Our new educational toolkit

The toolkit “Here I Go!” is released! This is a handbook developed by Unicef, IOM, SolidarityNow and Elix as a bridge between a language teaching program and experiential learning activities designed to support teachers.

SolidarityNow teachers, Stephania Bouris and Danae Karagiannis, contributed to this very important publication that is supporting our children and facilitating the educational activities that we are implementing in 13 refugee centers in Greece.

More information, as well as the toolkit in digital format, here

* The “Here I Go!” toolkit was implemented with EU funding.


There are a lot of requests for free educational training, seminars etc you are sending us- especially on technology issues.

We at SolidarityNow and in our effort to better organize our future training initiatives, we invite you to participate in the following survey that will help us better understand your needs and better plan our future educational initiatives.

Fill in the online questionnaire – it takes no more than 5 minutes – and do not forget to regurarly visit the SolidarityNow website to get all the information neeed about the current, free training opportunities we have to offer you.

Become a Network Technician Now!: The new free training by SolidarityNow

First step toward a networking career

Begin preparing for a networking career with this introduction to how networks operate. Computers and the internet are now part of our everyday life. SolidarityNow collaborates with Cisco, the largest networking company, and gives you the opportunity to study and prepare yourself for networking positions building the skillset required to work in the field!

Who is this for?

The Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) Training Program is an introduction to networks, addressed to everyone.

CCNA Routing and Switching curriculum builds the skills you need to get hired and succeed in jobs related to networking computers, devices, and things. Whether you’re preparing for your first job or specializing with more study, CCNA is a great foundation.

Career pathways include: network technician, support engineer, network administrator, network designer, network engineer, and more.

The CCNA certification professionally prepares you for a career in technology, designing and implementing networks, interfacing and customizing Cisco networking equipment that all major companies use. This course is designed to prepare you for entry-level networking jobs. No prerequisites required.

The program includes:

  • Practical training
  • Complete Cisco-approved educational material
  • Access to the Cisco Education Platform

Audience (Is this course for me?):

Anyone who desires a practical and technical introduction to the field of networking. Job roles include headend technicians, network operations centre (NOC) staff, network engineers, network administrators, and network help-desk staff.

Cisco Routing and Switching (R & S) covers many areas of networking. Starting from basic components such as wiring to more complex such as routing, switching, troubleshooting, wireless networks and security. In this course you will learn how to manage, set up and support corporate networks and recognize telecommunications communication protocols, provide the necessary security, support network users, and online security! Basic principles of IP network design and implementation, based on the TCP / IP protocols suite, focusing on new technologies such as IPv6, IoE and IoT. 

This includes learning the architecture, structure, and functions needed to support the operations and priorities of Fortune 500 companies to small innovative retailers. You will even get the chance to configure a network yourself, such as a simple LAN (Local Area Network). After completing this course, you will have a working knowledge of routing, switching, network applications and protocols. 

Completing this course you will be able to work as: IT Support technician, IT Administrator, Telecommunication Technician, Network Administrator, System Administrator, Network Administrator, IT Network Specialist, Network Engineer. In addition, you will have all the knowledge to advance your career as a network specialist.


After successful completion of this course you receive a Cisco Certificate of course completion.

In addition, those who have attended Cisco Certified Network Administrator – Intro to networking can easily continue with CCNA2 courses.

By completing the academic program you are eligible to sit for the CCNA Routing and Switching certification exams at an authorized Pearson VUE Test Center.


CCNA1 – Introduction to Networks is a 70-hour program. The schedule will be announced when the program starts. The CCNA 1 – Introduction to Networks course prepares students for the following:

  • Explain network technologies.
  • Explain how devices access local and remote network resources.
  • Implement basic network connectivity between devices.
  • Design an IP addressing scheme to provide network connectivity for a small to medium-sized business network.
  • Describe router hardware.
  • Explain how switching operates in a small to medium-sized business network.
  • Configure monitoring tools available for small to medium-sized business networks.
  • Configure initial settings on a network device.


Module 1: Lans, Wans, the Internet and the changing network Environment

Module 2: Router and Switch IOS, basic configuration, addressing Schemes

Module 3: Network Protocols and standards, data transfer in the network

Module 4: Physical layer protocols, network media, Data Link protocols, Media Access Control

Module 5: Ethernet protocol, LAN switches, Address Resolution Protocol

Module 6: Network Layer protocols, routing, configuring a router

Module 7: IPv4 and IPv6 Addressing, testing connectivity

Module 8: Subnetting IP Networks and VLSM, design considerations

Module 9: Transport Layer protocols, TCP, UDP, Port numbers

Module 10: Application Layer protocols and services

Module 11: Build a Small Network, design, security, performance, troubleshooting


The lessons will take place at the Athens Solidarity Center, at Domokou Street 2 in Larissa Station.


  • Basic computer literacy
  • Basic Internet usage skills
  • Basic PC operating system navigation skills
  • Comptia A+ or Network+ beneficial
  • A 20-25 hours/week study window is required. If you do not have enough time, this program is not for you.
  • Exams will take place place every week. You need to follow to the pace of the course. Each subsequent lesson is based on the previous one.
  • You need to attend class 8 hours/week.
  • The course will last approximately 4 months. You should be physically present in Athens.
  • The program is offered to everyone, regardless of nationality.
  • Good knowledge of English is required.


Participation in the training is free of charge for all participants.

For more information, please email or


Build your digital skills: The new free online courses by SolidarityNow

Another important learning initiative of SolidarityNow is about to begin, aimed at those who want to develop their digital skills and refine their knowledge on Internet, cyber-security, digital entrepreneurship and other contemporary themes.

In the form of online courses in order everyone form their own attendance schedule, these courses are provided free of charge by SolidarityNow, a certified CISCO Networking Academy, with two basic prerequisites:

  • The attendance should be completed the on August 31st, starting from June 1st.
  • All participants should speak English fluently, the working language of each online course.

If you are interested in attending one or more courses, enroll ASAP by following the link that accompanies the course you are interested in.

Get Connected – Enroll here

Entrepreneurship – Enroll here

Intro to cybersecurity – Enroll here

Cybersecurity Essentials – Enroll here

Intro to Internet of Things – Enroll here

Linux Unhatched – Enroll here

Be your own boss – For enrollments, send en email to (subject: BYB101-S19)

Learn more about the syllabus of each course

#1 Get Connected Skills Digital Literacy – Duration : 30 hours

Learn how to use a computer, connect devices and access search, email, and social media.

Get Connected introduces you to basic computer and Internet navigation skills.

The Solidarity Now Cisco Networking Academy® Get Connected course provides an introduction to the digital world with networks as a foundation for connecting people and things. The curriculum helps students understand how to use computers and connect to the Internet. Get Connected also explores the human network and introduces students to the world of social media. Students experience the fun and value of interacting with others through common software applications and tools.

You’ll learn how to:

  • Identify different types of computer systems, components, printers, and other devices.
  • Understand Microsoft Windows and how to work with files and folders.
  • Understand computer networking, how to browse and search the Internet, and how to use email.
  • Create accounts for Facebook, LinkedIn, and YouTube.
  • Identify common problems and implement simple solutions for hardware, software, and networks.

#2 Entrepreneurship Course- Duration: 15 hours

Develop an entrepreneurial way of thinking to improve your job opportunities and advance your career.

The Entrepreneurship course uses interactive, online case studies to show how to apply network technology skills to start a business or advance your career.

  • Increase your self confidence and personal motivation.
  • Learn how to capture the customer’s needs and design for them.
  • Improve leadership skills and financial literacy.
  • Learn about starting different kinds of businesses from an Internet café to a consulting service and more

#3 Intro to cybersecurity – Duration: 15hours

Learn how to protect yourself online and in social media while discovering careers in cybersecurity.

The Introduction to Cybersecurity course explores the broad topic of cybersecurity in a way that matters to you. Learn how to protect your personal data and privacy online and in social media, and why more and more IT jobs require cybersecurity awareness and understanding.

  • Learn what cybersecurity is and what it means for you personally and professionally.
  • Learn how to be safe online by understanding the most common threats, attacks and vulnerabilities.
  • Find out how businesses protect their operations from cyber attacks and why jobs are growing.
  • Study at your own pace and reinforce your understanding with activities and quizzes.
  • Connect with the global Cisco Networking Academy community.

#4 Cybersecurity Essentials-  Duration: 15 hours

Learn the fundamental principles, procedures, and practices of information and networking security.

The Cybersecurity Essentials course develops foundational understanding of cybersecurity and how it relates to information and network security. The course introduces students to characteristics of cyber crime, security principles, technologies, and procedures to defend networks. Through interactive, multimedia content, lab activities, and multi-industry case studies, students build technical and professional skills to pursue careers in cybersecurity.

  • Learn procedures to implement data confidentiality, integrity, availability and security controls on networks, servers and applications.
  • Understand security principles and how to develop security policies that comply with cybersecurity laws.
  • Apply skills through practice, using labs and Cisco Packet Tracer activities.
  • Get immediate feedback on your work through built-in quizzes and tests.
  • Connect with the global Cisco Networking Academy community.

#5 Intro to Internet of Things – Duration : 20 hours

Learn how the Internet of Things (IoT) and the digital transformation of business create new value and new job opportunities.

The Introduction to IoT course provides an overview of key concepts and challenges related to digital transformation. The course examines the evolution of the Internet and how the interconnection of people, processes, data, and things is transforming every industry. Note: Introduction to IoT replaces the Introduction to the Internet of Everything (IoE) course.

  • Learn how digital transformation turns information into action, creating unprecedented economic opportunity.
  • Understand how the IoT brings together operational technology and information technology systems.
  • Discover how business processes for evaluating and solving problems are being transformed.
  • Learn the security concerns that must be considered when implementing IoT solutions.
  • Practice what you learn using Cisco Packet Tracer, a network configuration simulation tool.
  • Connect to the global Cisco Networking Academy community

#6 Linux Unhatched-  Duration : 8 hours

Establish basic knowledge that starts to build Linux expertise, a valuable skill needed for in-demand IT careers.

The NDG Linux Unhatched exposes new learners to the basics of Linux software installation and configuration, and introduces the Linux command line in a short self-paced course. Aligned to the Linux exam objectives found on the CompTIA A+ certification, learners develop basic Linux knowledge and whet appetite to further build Linux expertise by continuing with either NDG Linux Essentials or NDG Linux I.

  • Learn how Linux is everywhere, from wrist watches to rocket ships, along with the growing career opportunities requiring Linux skills.
  • Learn the basics of the Linux Command Line Interface (CLI).
  • Apply Linux virtual machine knowledge step-by-step with hands-on lab activities.
  • Connect with the global Cisco Networking Academy community

#7 Be your own boss – Duration: 8 hours

The Be Your Own Boss course is a series of 8 modules on how to run a successful technology business and become a “technopreneur.” Each hour-long module includes an instructional video, insights from a noted technopreneur, and a quiz.

  • Understand what a technopreneur is and how to become one.
  • Discover how to put your creativity to work, test your ideas, and research the market.
  • Develop a business plan and get you and your team ready for market.
  • Create a business contract and develop business relationships with customers.
  • Connect with the global Cisco Networking Academy community.