In November 2015 two members of Damanhur Education APS participated in the Green Phoenix Conference in Switzerland. During the meeting a member from a Greek ecovillage shared about the conditions of the refugees landing in Greece and the “RefuGEN” mission was born.
It was a call to action. Ecovillages advocate a different lifestyle in harmony with people and nature. Over years of experimentation, they have had useful experiences and developed valuable tools. The intention for RefuGEN is to share this pratical knowledge in helping the refugee situation.
The idea of RefuGEN was to create a rotating group of Global Ecovillage Network (GEN) volunteers in Lesvos and to work with organizations that were already active. On December 23, 2015 the first RefuGEN volunteers arrived in Lesvos staying in a rented apartment.
Damanhur Education decided to collect clothes and other needed items in Damanhur to send to the refugees. They invited Damanhurian community groups to participate in the project by donating clothes, sleeping bags, blankets, shoes and socks, which were collected, sorted, packed and sent to Greece.
Thanks to the enthusiastic participation, in mid-February five pallets were on their way to Thessaloniki to the redistribution center, where they could be well-distributed according to the demand of the different refugee camps.
In this way, Damanhur Education brought a drop of help to the sea of humanitarian aid for refugees.