Detention and First Reception Centers

Reception and Identification Center, Vathy Samos

The Medical Intervention team that operated at the Migrant and Refugee Identification Center in Vathy, Samos, in a specially designed space, from 2013 to 2017, consisted of doctors, nurses, social scientists, psychologists and support staff and provided their services on a daily basis.

The services involved medical examination of people of concern and provision of primary health care, psychosocial support and distribution of medicine, bed linen, personal hygiene items, clothing and footwear.

Regarding the provision of medical services, in the first phase a medical screening was carried out for all new arrivals. Afterwards, patients provided medical history information and were examined, provided with a health card, and in case that acute problems were identified, appropriate medication was administered. If deemed necessary, serious cases were referred to a public hospital for further control and examinations.

Furthermore, verification of chronic diseases (e.g. diabetes, TB) took place along with cooperation with the corresponding health agencies, and the identification of vulnerable cases and their referral to the social and psychological service. Finally, actions related to health counseling and guidelines for preventive medicine were important part of the process.

The Social Service was responsible for the registration of specific requests (international protection, housing), protection and referral to the appropriate services, as well as for the registration, referral, protection and placement of vulnerable cases in secure shelters/ accommodation. Furthermore, an important task of the social service was the provision of social support and further investigation at individual and group level, as well as the coverage of basic needs, through the provision of personal hygiene items, clothing, footwear, bed linen and sleeping bags. Finally, as far as possible, the social service was responsible for organizing creative activities for the center’s beneficiaries.

The Psychological Service carried out individual interviews, with the aim of investigating the current situation and vulnerability of the beneficiary, conducting a psychological evaluation, and the identification of minors and of people with an addiction background. Furthermore, they provided mental health monitoring on vulnerable cases, in direct collaboration with the social service and the psychiatrist. In addition, the psychological service was responsible for providing specialized interventions in crisis situations and for carrying out specific psychosocial activities per target group in collaboration with the social worker.

First Reception Center, Fylakio Evros

The program started in March 2013 and ended in February 2015.

Services provided included:

Medical service

  • Obtaining patients’ medical history and completing the corresponding forms in the service’s recording system.
  • Examination of patients.
  • Treatment of acute diseases and administration of medication.
  • Crisis management.
  • Referral of cases to public hospitals and cooperation for the optimal treatment of cases
  • Control of specific health problems (e.g. diabetes) and cooperation with the appropriate institutional bodies.


Social service

  • Recording social history of the beneficiary and their requests.
  • Recommending and facilitating procedures for unaccompanied minors.
  • Providing information on the process of finding housing for people who expressed a desire for international protection in Greece.
  • Screening for vulnerable cases: families, pregnant women, elderly people, unaccompanied minors, reported victims of torture, victims of human trafficking, victims of abuse (labor, sexual and physical).
  • Identification and investigation of victims of torture or victims of human trafficking, in collaboration with the medical and psychological service.
  • Cooperation with the UN High Commission as the main responsible for updating the legal framework and the rights of prisoners.
  • Conducting groups with the main objective of smooth functioning and normalization of interpersonal relations as well as the assignment of responsibilities (to the guests) in terms of their better stay at the KE.PY. (First Reception Center).
  • Registration of guests’ demands in case they wished to repatriate to their country of origin.
  • Covering basic needs such as clothing, footwear, stationery, toys, entertainment and creative work groups.
  • Collaboration with the psychologist for optimal case management.
  • Social support of families and creative activities for their members.
  • Conducting group activities in the accommodation facility.

Psychological Service

  • Recording mental health history.
  • Investigation of current situation and further monitoring.
  • Providing psychological monitoring for vulnerable cases in collaboration with the social worker.
  • Collaboration with the program’s physician in psychiatric cases that were already under treatment. Referrals of the mentally ill to the Mental Health Center or to on-call hospitals.
  • Provision of specialized interventions in emergency crisis situations.
  • Collaboration with the social worker to carry out specific psychosocial activities per target group.
  • Teaching of basic stress relief and stress management techniques.
  • Specialized approach in case of vulnerability for reported victims of torture or victims of human trafficking.
  • Identification and support of people with withdrawal symptoms, in collaboration with the medical service.
  • Assessing the mental health of adult and minor guests, through methods of drawing, playing and other simple methods (rapid mental health test), with the aim of meeting individual needs whether at individual or group level.
  • Collaboration among all services (medical and psychosocial) for a substantial intervention in the accommodation facility in order for the therapeutic relationship to last.

Detention Centers for Foreigners

The Organization was present at the detention centers for foreigners from 2004 to 2014, in Amigdaleza, Renti, El. Venizelos, in Elliniko and Aspropirgos.

  • November 2004 – February 2006: detention centers for women and minors, Amigdaleza.
  • February 2006 – December 2009: male and female detention centers, Renti.
  • 2010-2014: detention center, airport El. Venizelos
  • 2011-2014: detention centers of Aspropirgos and Elliniko.
  • 2012-2014: detention center for men, Amigdaleza.

The services provided during the project were as follows:

Medical services:

  • Regular clinic – treatment of acute illnesses and launching of appropriate examinations and treatment in collaboration with the respective Hospitals if needed.
  • Monitoring of chronic diseases and health issues.
  • Control of special health problems (e.g. diabetes, special infections) in consultation with public hospitals and agencies to better address each situation.
  • Health counseling.
  • Preventive medicine guidelines.

Psychological Service:

  • Addressing adaptation difficulties.
  • Immediate treatment of acute psychological issues.
  • Weekly monitoring of psychiatric cases by a psychiatrist.
  • Crisis management – ​​psychological support.
  • Investigation of victims of human trafficking in collaboration with the social worker.

Social service:

  • Conducting a social history interview by logging the social profile of the detainees (age, country of origin, marital status).
  • Referring cases that needed further assistance to the relevant services.
  • Investigation for victims of human trafficking in collaboration with the psychologist and referral to the relevant service (anti-trafficking) of the Athens Security Department.
  • Providing additional information on the asylum procedure and about the shelters.

Unaccompanied Minors Detention Center

In 2008, a special detention area for unaccompanied minors was created in the detention center of Amigdaleza. The members of our organization provided medical, psychosocial support as well as creative activities and Greek language learning services to all minors until the end of 2014.

During this time, over 3,200 children between the ages of 8 and 17 benefited from the services provided.

The services were:

  • Addressing health problems.
  • Providing counseling on matters of health education and sexually transmitted diseases.
  • Social support.
  • Supporting victims of human trafficking and liaising with the relevant services.
  • Providing information on the asylum procedure.
  • Providing information about the shelters and referral for those who requested to stay there.
  • Addressing psychological and psychiatric problems, dealing with crises.
  • Preventive intervention for people who faced additional risks due to delinquent behavior (users of psychotropic substances) in collaboration with the Psychiatrist and the MOSAIC Service of KETHEA.
  • Learning Greek – basic level.
  • Creative activities.

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