Unaccompanied refugee children are one of the most vulnerable groups within the refugee population. Children without parents, without a family, become victims of exploitation, abuse, and social exclusion. Studies conducted by international organizations on the management of the refugee issue highlight the situation of unaccompanied minors as a dark issue inadequately addressed by the European Union's policy until today.
In October 2019, Kinoniko EKAV took over the operation of initially three Unaccompanied Minors’ Centers, as part of the «Nefeli» initiative. Subsequently, as of December 2021, the organization commenced the operation of another three Centers, under the «Kallisti» initiative. These centers are located in Athens, Piraeus, Penteli, Larissa, and Kozani. Today, the «Nefeli-Kallisti» program includes six Centers, for unaccompanied refugee boys, aged 12 to 18. These centers, are co-funded by the European Union and national resources, through the Asylum, Migration, and Integration Fund 2021-2027. The unaccompanied minor refugees residing in these centers are supported by specialized personnel, including social workers, psychologists, teachers, caregivers, nurses, cooks, cleaning staff, administrative personnel, and interpreters.
Within the centers housing, nutrition, medical care, psychosocial support, education, and entertainment is provided for 208 children. Additionally, legal support is offered for the family reunification and relocation processes. At the same time, teenagers have the opportunity to participate in vocational training workshops that prepare them for independence and equip them for their adulthood.
The main objective of this action is the development of children's skills and the enhancement of their self-confidence, with the ultimate goal of their integration into Greek society, always taking into consideration the diversity and choices of each child.
With this action, Kinoniko EKAV is addressing its fundamental goal, which is to combat social exclusion in all its forms and contribute to fulfilling our country's international humanitarian commitments.