Taking into account the great need for housing and protection for unaccompanied minor refugees and migrants in our country, since August 2016 we have been operating shelters for children aged 12 – 18 years who live in Greece without their families, exposed to various threats and risks. The action includes the provision of safe housing and living conditions for these children, aiming to protect and to integrate them into Greek society, to help them relocate in another European country or support their family reunification process.
We make sure that Medin’s shelters function as a transitional, yet warm and loving environment, which resembles as much as possible to a “home” and where the necessary resources are provided for each child in order to cover the lack of supportive environment and mitigate the consequences of separation and deprivation of their natural family.
We provide a holistic services approach for unaccompanied minors. Specifically, the shelters cover accommodation, supply of nutritious food, health services, educational support, social and psychological support, entertaining, athletic and creative activities. Finally, we aim to achieve social inclusion for the minors who live in the shelters.
The staff supporting the shelters’ operations are experienced professionals. They aim at developing an interpersonal relation with each minor to gain their trust and to help them experience a family environment.
- Reception of beneficiaries, provision of information on their rights and shelter operation rules
- Social history and individual action plan
- Counseling and investigation of needs and vulnerabilities
- Individual and group meetings with beneficiaries on issues related to daily living, individual needs, health issues, adaptation to current situation and relationships with other beneficiaries
- Referral to public hospitals and other health centers, when deemed necessary
- Referral to the shelter’s psychologist
- Collaboration with the rest of the staff for the minors’ optimal management
Mental Health Service
- Psychological history
- Psychological evaluation
- Psychological support individually and in groups
- Referral toa child’s psychiatrist, where necessary, and cooperation with them for the minors’ optimal management
- Collaboration with the rest of the staff for minors’ optimal management
- Registration of asylum application
- Individual meetings in order to investigate needs and available options
- Preparation for asylum interviews
- Evaluation of educational level in Greek and English
- Registration in public schools and other educational services
- Greek and English lessons in the shelters
- Cultural and athletic events around the neighborhood
- Participation in events around the city of Athens
As a result of our intervention, the impact on the local community is significant, as social awareness concerning diversity, racism, and discrimination is raised. In addition, integration becomes more and more possible through engagement with activities within the community.