Who are we?
Family to Family is a small NGO founded and operating in Thessaloniki, Northern Greece. It was founded by volunteers from the UK and Greece with a desire to help other families by offering them some sense of "normal life" away from the camps.
Background of the organisation:
Our volunteers were privately providing housing since November 2016 for residents of Oraiokastro Camp. When we asked the residents of Oraiokastro how we could help, they replied "we'd like to feel normal".
In May 2017, Family to Family was officially registered as an NGO in Thessaloniki, Northern Greece. We are a small, adaptable NGO that consists of 3 members who work together to provide for other families in need. We provide housing to refugee families that are waiting for their reunification/relocation decisions and to families that seek asylum in Greece.
Since November 2016 we have hosted a total of 101 tenants in 10 fully equipped properties around the city of Thessaloniki. We are covering all amenities needed for a decent standard of living. We provide washing machines, cookers, fridge/freezers, beds, wi-fi and household items. Hot water and heating comes as standard. You wouldn't think we need to mention this, but it is not standard in the camps or some of the housing options we've seen in Greece. We cover all utility bills. Even the hideously expensive electricity bill!
Apart from providing stable, secure housing we help the families integrate with the Greek society. We encourage neighbourly interactions and friendship and help our tenants to register their children in the Greek school system. We currently have 7 children in school, ranging in age from 6 to 16. The families learn how to use the buses so they can move independently around the city and make use of the extensive support networks in Thessaloniki.
We also help families register for the cash card system so they can have a monthly allowance. When this fails or tenants fall between the cracks, (often when transferring from camp to home), we provide financial aid directly.
Our goal for the future is to be able to fully support asylum seekers in Greece so they can integrate with the community and live decently till they reach the point of fully supporting themselves.
We encourage our tenants to be independent, integrate and help each other.
Main sources of income:
Our main sources of income are private donations from individuals. We don’t receive funding from other NGOs or governmental resources. That way families from all over the world can help the families stranded in Greece by donating money for them.
The core of Family to Family is this: Families helping Families.