20 October 2016
meeting at the UNHCR office in the RIC, Pili, Kos
RIC co-ordination meeting in Kos to give a update on the situation of refugees living in and outside the hotspot.
Presence of refugees on the island 1350, 1155 living in the hotspot and Annex (an assortment of UNHCR tents just outside the Hotspot) and 200 outside in Zikas accommodation in town due to different vulnerabilities. Actors at the meeting are Representatives of all organisations involved in the support of refugees on Kos,
RIS (the first reception service of the government), UNHCR, EASO, EURPOL, POLICE, FRONTEX, the ARMY, Samaritan Purse, Mercy Corps, WAHA, PRAKSIS and us KRNYH.
Different problems dealing with safety, food, health and other issues are discussed. The Army and Government representatives are accepting and listening to UNHCR lead NGO's advice in an increasing manner. The allover collaboration is effective.
The Hotspot as such now is a fenced area, closed for access after 10pm, this may firstly seem intimidating but also protects vulnerables of attack from outside the hotspot.
The Hotspot is divided into 2 sections, A and B. since a few weeks, which is easier for families to live calmly, all families are staying in Section A and single men in section B, as their living habits and schedules are very different. Children can now sleep better and women are not disturbed, also culturally there often occurs a distrust of Syrian refugees into Pakistani men. Around 100 Minors are staying under the Gurdianship of Praxis in a separate section thus fenced. Praxsis an NGO also involved as a direct supplier of services to the RIS.
Priority this week is a scabies treatment fulfilled by the ARMY and WAHA of 320 refugees, we discuss a method of wash etc where all actors are involved to avoid reinfections. There is a large gap of cleaning kits for specific living units in the RIS, we as KRNYH mentioned we could offer 150 kits in the next weeks. The money which is very untransparently filtering into the hotspot by EU funding is never enough and there are obvious gaps in Wash/Hygiene and Food.
Ideally all refugees at the Hotspot move to Athens at one point and have appointments there to apply for Asylum in Greece, the it is decided if they will be sent back to their country of Origin or remain in Greece. The story of refugees being sent to Turkey unless illegally is not validated here. Refugees in Kos can only live the hotspot and take a ticket to Athens for the boat, once they have held a Police Registration Paper with a photograph (for most stateless cases the only means of identification) for longer than 25 days.
Some families with vulnerabilities have just returned to Kos from Athens as they were not allocated the Asylum wishes. UNHCR's main concern to identify vulnerabilities and offer access to each person for access to asylum applications. There are specific assessment exercises in separate languages, Farsi/Arabic/Urdu.
Mercy Corps is starting a cash distribution programme during 2 days to offer a blanket distribution of 90 euro monthly for every first adult in a family and maximum 340 euro for a family.
There will also be ATM training sessions and a meeting with the local bank to avoid an overflow of cash output.
The refugees on Kos have extremely limited access to supplies, the cash programme will help to some extend. The main problem seems to be quantities of food supply, small portions of potato for lunch and small dinners. We are urgently asked to keep our support active and going and need to fundraise consistently, we ask for your help:
14 SEPTEMBER 2016 KOS/BERLIN
With current calculations, we run out of funding by the end of October and would have to stop our support – which is not in the interest of us, the UNHCR or the Kos population.
A brief summary in retrospect:
Throughout the past 390 days, we as KRNYH distributed warm food every single day, more than 150,000 meals to refugees in need on Kos.
We managed to establish a well functioning system in close collaboration with the UNHCR and the Greek community, integrating a Greek cook who employs Greeks as well as Pakistani and Afghan refugees.
In February, a Hotspot was installed – far too late due to severe opposition of the local municipality not wanting to accept the situation of a steady influx of refugees and migrants on the island. The hotspot, a place which is responsible in its definition in registering, supplying shelter, medical aid, food and a basic living condition for each refugee, is failing in Kos.
It is heavily overcrowded with numbers exceeding 1500 (scoped for 800 places) and conditions being very very low. It is lacking in basic cleaning materials like bleach and mops, there is not enough food and most NGO's are still prohibited in entering the premises.
The mood in the Hotspot is very tender, refugees are stuck and have no destination or rights to leave.
We as KRNYH are delivering the food to the outside of the structure which is just outside a village, called PILI (an ancient Turkish village 10 miles outside Kos Town). There is an essential need to offer food to the many families and minors staying outside the hotspot. The island does not have a support infrastructure as we are used to in Germany.
25 February 2016
Good Morning, we have been busy with many things in Kos, Cologne, Berlin, our work, family ....no time or urgency for a while to post, which does not mean that there is any change in strategy or action, keeping out of politics.
We have been and are continuing our support daily, with breakfast and tea at Kyttarro Club and lunch for all refugees that are on the island.
The Hotspot is being developed as I write and there are negotiations between the Army, UNHCR,FRONTEX and NGO's on how to collaborate.
At the moment there are around 350 refugees on the island with high arrivals in the last few days. (40% Pakistanis, 60% Syrians, Iraqis and Afghani families)
Please donate. We rely on and solely function with slow and steady donations. thank you. salam
1 December 2015
we have a new system of food distribution which offers and gives food to all families at Hotel Oscar rented by UNHCR in collaboration with Mercy Corps and our food support. The people staying there 1-3 days are mainly Afghan, Syrian and Iraqi families being categorised in vulnerability criteria 1-3 depending in availability , 300 beds are available.
Most Pakistani men are staying outdoors in tents or elsewhere, we offer food for all people and all nationalities and hope to open a space for all refugees to be able to meet and talk and have warm tea in the next to weeks. Also as there needs to be a permanent solution for food distribution during rain/cold/Storm. Our new Kos Coordinators, a dutch doctor and a Syrian ex-journalist who runs the NGO Salam in Berlin are doing tremendous work for KRNYH.
5 November 2015
just received these heartbreaking news again from our KRNYH local volunteer:
"Ich habe gerade 2 volunteers getroffen die heute Nacht mit im Krankenhaus waren um einer Familie zu helfen. Boot nur Sprit für halbe Überfahrt dickes Schiff kommt vorbei Wellen bringen das Schlauchboot zum umkippen. Ein Vater hat 3 Kinder im arm und schwimmt bis zur Rettung 3 stunden. Zwischendurch rutscht ihm ein Kind aus den armen und ertrinkt. Seine Frau ertrinkt. Sein Vater ist vermisst. Incl Schmuggler der auch gerettet wurde kommen alle wegen Unterkühlung ins Krankenhaus. Schmuggler in Handschellen. Jedoch setzt man ihn sehr unsensibel im Krankenhaus direkt neben den traumarisierten Vater"
.......just to point out how desperate the situation is.....