Over the last year, Beyond Borders has been serving refugees on the island of Lesvos by offering transformational educational opportunities. Many of you have played an important role in the development of this work and know the overwhelming need.
Education is the key to the future. Education provides necessary skills in life, it builds confidence, and it develops critical thinking. Education provides children and adults a voice in their communities and encourages their abilities to give back to their societies. Beyond Borders is working to provide transformational education to children and adults who are displaced.
Beyond Borders has been working on the island of Lesvos for over a year. Lesvos currently hosts over 16,000 refugees and migrants who have fled war and conflict, waiting for their asylum papers to be processed. While they wait, their children suffer the loss of years of education. Beyond Borders partners with Drop in the Ocean to offer non-formal educational services, focused on preparing children with the skills they need to re-enter formal schooling. Our classrooms are a safe space where students are guided by caring teachers to “learn to heal” and “heal to learn.” The school readiness program runs for 10 weeks, offering structure and stability during an uncertain period in the refugee children’s lives.
Our children’s programming on Lesvos is held at a community center in the neighboring village. It’s too far a walk for children to come so we provide transportation to class every day. Knowing these families have already lost so much we provide free programming and transportation. There are no enrollment fees or book charges for materials supplied (think craft supplies, pencils, paper, printer ink for worksheets, etc). As students often come to class hungry we also provide healthy snacks to help the development of these children. No one learns when they are hungry! This giving season we are looking for donors to help our work continue.
We are looking for sponsors for these dear children to cover the costs of classroom supplies, snacks and petrol for transportation. Fuel on the island isn’t cheap (running at $6.70 per gallon) but it is our duty to provide these children with the opportunity to learn!
We have found that adults are eager learners too and deeply appreciate opportunities to learn English. We partner with other groups to set up safe learning spaces where adults can come to each day to build relationships with caring teachers and engage their minds and bodies in English language programs. The learning center at Oasis directly across from the main refugee camp on the island, however many of our adult students come from Moria, the reception center which hosts the majority of refugees on the island. Students traditionally have walked several miles to class but with winter approaching with heavy rains and wind it will become nearly impossible for our students to continue attending class. We would like to offer bus tickets to each student enrolled in our programming.
As the end of the year approaches and giving season begins, we ask you to think about making a difference in the lives of refugees in Greece by donating to our programs.
We invite you to partner with us this giving Tuesday by giving a donation to sponsor a student for the entire 10 week programming. Our goal for giving Tuesday is to raise $6,500 or the means to provide 24 adults and 28 children the opportunity to attend our programming this coming winter! We need just 52 donors who will gift $125 to reach our goal!
You can help us achieve our goal by donating to Beyond Borders on #GivingTuesday, December 3rd. Joining this global movement helps inspire personal philanthropy and encourage charitable giving during the holiday season.
Share in our progress by following us on Facebook and @beyondborders_teachbeyond on Instagram. The more we share the Facebook posts the greater our reach will go. Will you help us share this ask on Giving Tuesday?