Greece + 3 more

UNHCR Greece Factsheet - August 2019 [EN/EL]

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Refugee flows increased by 60 per cent this month. Over 7,700 reached the Greek Aegean islands and 1,600 people crossed the land borders, mostly Afghans and Syrians.

While islands’ reception centres are intended to host 5,400 people, the increase brought the population to 20,500, placing in particular risk the 1,180 unaccompanied children amongst them.

The death of a 15-year old boy in Moria stressed the need for measures to protect the 4,393 unaccompanied children in Greece, including with relocation to other European States.

Working with Partners

  • UNHCR supports the Government of Greece who leads the refugee response, working closely with other United Nations agencies, international and national NGOs, regional and State institutions, municipalities, grassroots organizations, refugee communities and the local society.

Main Activities

Accommodation and Cash Assistance

  • UNHCR runs the EU-funded ESTIA accommodation and cash assistance programmes in cooperation with the Government, municipalities and NGOs.

  • UNHCR works closely with staff from State organizations to prepare for the transition of these programmes to the Greek authorities.

  • Apartments in cities and towns offer asylum-seekers and refugees greater dignity and independence. Children can go to school, while access to healthcare and other services is facilitated. It also helps the integration of those who will remain in Greece.
    The host population benefits from the 4,442 apartments and 15 buildings that the programme rents in 21 cities and towns across Greece. UNHCR had 25,265 accommodation places in August.

  • In August, UNHCR gave cash in the form of pre-paid cards to 74,350 asylumseekers and refugees in apartments and sites. Cash allows refugees to choose what they need most. It is spent on food, goods and services, and contributes to the local community. In August, almost 7.6 million euro in cash assistance will eventually be re-injected into the local economy.