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School for refugee minors on Greek island

School for refugee minors on Greek island
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Attempting to give young unaccompanied refugees a sense of normality – a new school on the Greek island of Lesbos is teaching Greek, English, mathematics and music to some 150 young people.

Gecko Kids, named after the lizard, opened its doors in August.

The youngsters range in age from 12 to 17 and come from some 20 countries.

Two NGOs – “Iliaktida” (Sunbeam) and “Together for Better Days” – joined forces on the project.

Accommodation, food and medical care are also provided.

Magdalene Veloutsou from Iliaktida is one of the teachers. “These children have changed me as a person,” she told Euronews.

“I see life very differently. I was taking certain things for granted, but now I truly appreciate everything I have. It’s the first time that I look forward to going to work. I want to see them and hear them say ‘My teacher, I love you so much’.

Andrew Foley from ‘‘Together for Better Days’’ said: “I came like many many thousands did to Lesvos, to volunteer.

“When I came I realised that, like many of us did, that people were not afforded basic dignity and humanity and we wanted to work to change that”.

Euronews correspondent Apostolos Staikos reported: “ According to Greek authorities, there are 2900 unaccompanied refugee minors in the country.

NGOs try to get them out of the camps and back to school, so maybe they might remember what it feels like to be a child.”