The Global Aid Network UK (GAiN UK) is the humanitarian aid partner of Agapé UK, dedicated to bringing hope and tangible help to those facing poverty and crisis. Responding to disasters around the world, we not only send aid but also go to the areas affected to be an extra pair of hands, serving on the ground.
For example, we regularly send teams to one of the temporary hotspot camps on Lesvos, Greece, where thousands of displaced people are located.
There are 70.8 million forcibly displaced people worldwide. 25.9 million of these people are refugees. In the middle of this, in 2019, a hotspot camp on Lesvos built to house 2,200 people swelled in size to a population of over 18,000 (UNCHR).
When families choose to flee their homes to escape the terrors of war, it is not an easy choice. They leave everything they have known and worked for, and are walking into an uncertain future. For many of them the decision to flee is just the beginning of their traumatic journey to safety and so often the conditions that they are met with are far from providing them with the shelter and supplies that they need to survive.
Following the closure of many European borders in 2016, Turkey established a settlement with the EU, stating that they would house any asylum seekers that land in Greece. The hotspot system was created to facilitate the identification and registration of asylum seekers on arrival. However, rather than these individuals simply passing through the transitional camp on Lesvos, many are now stuck there whilst their applications for refuge are processed. Due to the slow processing and delayed transfers of new arrivals to the camp, overcrowding and substandard living conditions are ever-growing issues that compromise the human rights of those stuck within the camp.
Volunteers serving in Greece have made an amazing impact in the lives of refugees who have fled in search of safety on these islands. GAiN UK is playing a part in helping to bring practical help and hope to people who desperately need it.
Would you like to be part of a team of volunteers serving in very hands-on ways? Visit our GAiN UK Overseas Teams page to find out more and apply.
Urgent Relief Appeal
Collect essential relief items to send to the new arrivals camps in Greece. Visit our Refugee Relief Appeal page to find the items we are currently collecting and how you can mobilise others to join.