About the project
More than 30,000 school-age refugee children are spread throughout Greece, and only about 40% are enrolled in school. Theirworld has worked with UNICEF and local organisations to provide hope for a better future to displaced children.
Working alongside the Greek government, UNICEF and local community organisations, Theirworld has invested more than $5 million to address the refugee education crisis in the Greek mainland and Islands.
Theirworld has provided education to over 5,000 children and funded the expansion of an education centre. We secured €1.35m in funding to help continue education during Greece’s Covid-19 restrictions.
30,000 children have a pathway into education after the Greek government adopted a Theirworld plan to deliver a formal education to all refugee and migrant children in Greece.
Little access to education
Greece is home to about 90,000 refugees, more than half of them children. Most have fled repression, violence and conflict in Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq. Children often arrive having missed 12-18 months of schooling, before a further wait for education in their host country.
The result is thousands left with little access to the education every young person deserves.
In partnership with the Greek government, UNICEF and local community organisations, Theirworld has worked tirelessly to improve the prospects of refugee children in Greece, many of whom arrive having suffered significant trauma. We set out a proposed plan in our 2020 report, Finding Solutions to Greece’s Refugee Education Crisis, which has been adopted by the Greek government as a way forward.
Theirworld has been an extremely valuable partner to UNICEF's work in Greece enabling us to implement key inclusive education initiatives for refugee and migrant children. Through "All Children in Education" we are aiming to reach every refugee and migrant child in the country, ensuring they receive the education and opportunities they deserve. Access to education is a vital human right for every child.Luciano Calestini, UNICEF Representative in Greece
A life-changing opportunity
It means 26,000 school-age refugee children will be enrolled in school over the course of a three year programme. This access to formal learning provides displaced young people with a life-changing opportunity to build a life where they’re able to fulfil their potential.
Making this impact on Greece’s formal education provision for refugees follows on from Theirworld’s prolonged commitment to overlooked young people in the country.
In 2020 we helped to fund a new building as part of Tapuat, a non-formal education centre on the island of Lesvos, where children can find space to learn and play away from the overcrowded Moria refugee camp. The centre is run by Greek non-profit organisation Iliaktida and serves children from infants and preschool age up to 17-year-olds
Outlets like Tapuat are an opportunity for displaced young people to begin and develop what we hope will be a lifelong relationship with learning. When the Moria camp was gutted by fire later in 2020, Tapuat also sprang into action as a crucial meeting point and accommodation shelter.
Education for refugee children can act as both a safety net and a foundation for personal growth. It means they’re less vulnerable to exploitation, and they become more likely to develop foundational skills, go on to higher education and have more access to better job prospects. The hope a quality education provides means children can envision a future beyond their current difficult circumstances.
Fewer than 15% of refugee children in Greece have any form of education. Theirworld’s work in Greece proves that commitment to a cause can unlock big change for young learners, giving them a crucial opportunity to shape their own futures.
UNICEF works to ensure all children living in Greece are able to fully enjoy their rights, including access to an inclusive education.
Learn more at The Key: Theirworld’s comprehensive information toolkit on the global education crisis.
Education and refugees
Educating refugees provides young people with the opportunity to shape their own futures, whether in their own countries, or as meaningful contributors in their host countries.