Habibi.Works is a free-to-use, community-organized maker space bringing together asylum-seekers, international makers, and Greek locals to share knowledge, skills, and experiences. Situated just 300 meters across from the Katsikas refugee camp, the 15 different working areas, ranging from wood and metal work to IT classes and music production, center the needs of individuals, working at eye level with them to create a space where individual freedom, potential, and agency can be restored.
People seeking asylum in Greece face waits of several years, without access to dignified living conditions, education, employment or psychological support. Roughly 1300 refugees and asylum-seekers live in the Epirus region; 1000 of them across the road from Habibi.Works. Today, residents of Katsikas camp are enclosed by a 3-metre wall and scrutinized by security; treated like prisoners despite having committed no crime. Individual freedom and personal autonomy are completely stifled.
Since 2016, Habibi.Works has provided a space of empowerment, education, and community. As the primary actor supporting the residents of Katsikas camp, we offer access to tools, materials and expert guidance in 15 working areas free of charge, recognizing the multitude of short comings in traditional refugee resettlement programmes. With values centered on transparency and radical inclusion, many spaces are led by members of the refugee community, who know best the needs of their communities.
Individuals participating in our space have attested to feelings of self-empowerment, increased self-confidence, more balanced mental health, and optimism about their future. Individual agency and creativity have a safe space to thrive. Integration into Greek society is facilitated through positive social encounters and empowered individuals. Habibi.Works provides counternarratives to the limiting view on refugees and asylum-seekers, celebrating the resilience and potential of individuals.
This project has provided additional documentation in a PDF file (projdoc.pdf).
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