Marathon of Afghanistan
Happy Christmas, Happy New Year, Happy Chinese New Year, Happy Springtime - for those of us for whom Spring (rightly!) starts on the 1st of February, and Happy Birthday, if you have celebrated any or all of these events since our last report.
This report comes to you slightly delayed due to an unforseen issue, which we have now resolved!
I have attached a lovely update below about how your support has helped us to grow and sustain HSR from September 2021 to January 2022. As is normal with the context we are working in, some of the details in the report already need further updates, which I present to you now!
Thankfully, people in the asylum process in Greek refugee camps have been reissued with cash cards, having been without any money for over 3 months. However, the long food lines remain, and have been used as the reason that the financial support (previously approximately €150 per month) provided through the cash cards has been slashed in half in most cases.
In addition to this, there are many people and families who have had their asylum cases accepted, but have been waiting in limbo for many months for their IDs and Refugee Passports to be issued. Once a case has been accepted, people are no longer eligible for any support - food, financial or otherwise.
This means that people are continuing to seek out employment which is insecure and underpaid.
The HSR Coordination team has been a two-person job up to now. Given our growth and plans for 2022, we are now recruiting for a Community Coordinator. This will be someone from the refugee and asylum seeking community. Being a community-led project has thus far meant listening to the needs of the community, providing activities which are demanded, through the expertise of community teachers. However, it is so important to us that we continue to always improve on exemplifying our values through action. Recruiting a Community Coordinator is just one of these actions, and we are really excited to have someone with new expertise and experience join our team.
Expansion - The Moveable Gym project
We have begun offering sports activities in Ioannina, as well as in Habibi.Works in Katsikas. The majority of refugees living in the city are unaccompanied minors. Some live in accomodation in the city, while others are housed in remote locations on the outskirts of the city, with very little public transport options. Given this, we are now searching for funding to start our Moveable Gym project. This project is basically a van which is kitted out with gym equipment in the back, meaning we can bring the gym to people in remote locations, who cannot access our regular classes. If you have any interest in supporting this project, or know someone that does!
We just keep going!
In between all this, we had a women only climbing competition, an Under 15s Football Competition and we took part in the Virtual Marathon of Afghanistan.
We have also lost some structural funding from some big actors who have pulled out of Greece due to a lack of income in 2021. This means that your support means more than ever, and is allowing us to continue growing and moving. Thank you so much!
Please, if you are not already, consider following us on Instagram and liking us on Facebook. If you are following us, consider sharing our page and telling your friends and family about the project, to help us grow our network. If you would like to keep up to date with all of our activities, please sign up to our monthly newsletter here!
We are #StrongerTogether !
Maeve, Marta & all at HSR
Photo: Jon Garate
Photo: Jon Garate
Photo: Jon Garate