AYS SPECIAL: Elpida — humanity, dignity, and community

What makes Elpida different is that it is not a camp but a place where people live together, in the best possible way. It is clean, has many bathrooms, kitchens for all residents where all of them can cook for themselves, a yoga center, tea room, women’s space where women feel safe to take off their scarfs and, at least for a moment, be relaxed and free. These are simple and small things, but they make a huge difference. NGOs and different organizations in the field can propose people who could be moved to Elpida, while the final decision is made by the Ministry.

Unlike those people who are living in camps, residents of Elpida, are calm and almost relaxed. “For us, this is the first time to sleep in bed since February,” a Syrian family we met told us. They moved in a couple of days before our visit in mid-August. Their room is not big, but it is clean, it has all white sheets, and it has big window. None of the camps have anything like that. “We do not want to stay in Greece; we want to continue toward Western Europe. But for now, even if it takes longer, we are safe here,” they tell us. And unlike many people we met in camps, this family is talking about their plans and the future.

Source: Are You Syrious

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