Meeting migrant people in Greece means recognizing their dignity and sharing a part of the journey with them - Mark, volunteer.
Greece is the European Union's first port of call for those fleeing war and persecution: migrant people arrive on the shores of one of the Aegean islands in makeshift boats or cross the land border between Turkey and Greece on foot, and thus find themselves stranded in a place where they experience other inhumane hardships, a limbo of wearisome waiting, the ghost of deportation, and the terror of violent refoulement.
Those who arrive in Greece, in fact, may find themselves confined to a closed camp, where health care is very poor, children have no access to schooling, and there is no security for the safety of women and vulnerable people. Those who do manage to move to Athens often find themselves on the streets, without services, only to face the same insecurity and risks of being taken back to the country from which they are fleeing.
Volunteers from the Pope John XXIII Community and Operation Dove, the Community's nonviolent peace corps, have chosen to share their daily lives with these people: women, men, whole families who come from the most war-torn countries. The personal encounter is the heart of the presence, because it removes the label of "migrant" and focuses on their dignity as human beings who simply seek better living conditions for themselves and their families. Volunteers visit people living in and outside refugee camps, try to network with other associations and realities to offer aid and services, monitor and denounce Human Rights violations suffered.
To do all this they also need your support: funds are needed to guarantee the constant presence of volunteers (international flights, food and lodging), for travel including to the islands, to monitor migration routes at the borders of Greece, to offer basic necessities and legal assistance to those most in need.
With your contribution you will accompany a part of the journey of those seeking a life of peace and security for themselves and their families.