After a few weeks of self-isolating, adjusting to Greek public health rules, and taking on minor jobs (we couldn’t help ourselves), we are back in operation!
Working at slightly lower capacity we resumed work with our main clients and will restart our usual pickups and deliveries to Moria camp. We’re still taking precautions to stay as safe and healthy as possible, but we can’t wait to get back to business as usual (or as usual as possible)!
We need your support!
A huge thanks to our partner Help Refugees! They support us financially with about 60% of the running costs every month. But we are urgently looking for donations to cover the remaining 40% (around 3000€ a month) to run at a maximum capacity.
Branch address: P.Kountouriotou 17, 81100 Mytilene
The Situation and the Project
The Lava Project is a Public Hygiene and Medical Support laundry facility for Moria refugee camp on Lesvos.
Lesvos is one of 5 Greek islands where Reception and Identification Centres (RIC) were established to basically store refugees, often for several years, while they go through the lengthy and complex asylum application process.
Moria is the biggest refugee camp in Europe with a built capacity of 4,000 it now has 21,000 people 40% of whom are children (1,200 unaccompanied by parents) living in and around the camp.
This camp has insufficient shelter, lack of basic health care (the government contract clinic is currently closed), poor and inadequate sanitation and water supply and very bad food. There are no facilities for laundry in the camp.
As it is almost impossible to wash clothes and bedding – bed bugs and scabies are widespread. This encourages the spread of many other diseases.
The Lava Project was founded in June 2019 by volunteers to try to fill this gap in humanitarian aid left by the authorities and larger NGOs.
In this first phase of the project we concentrate on the most vulnerable people – single mothers with young babies, unaccompanied children, single women and medical cases. At the moment we are washing around 1400 bags of clothes a month. When we get to full capacity we will wash 3500-4000 bags a month. As well as volunteers we involve people from the camp in the daily work which helps their physical and mental health while they endure the long wait in Moria and the uncertainty of their futures.
Our main goals
- All people in RIC (Reception and Identification Camp) Moria get the possibility to wash their clothes, blankets, towels regularly.
- To improve the hygiene standards in RIC Moria.
- Refugees from Moria are volunteering in the project, get responsibilities and are a part of the coordination.
- They improve their mental and physical stage and get a better chance of integration.
Our side goals
- With the collaboration with medical teams on the ground we reduce scabies infection and the hygienic condition in the camp.
- With the gathered knowledge we push the camp management, bigger NGOs and the state to help change the conditions.
- Refugees become coordination members and engage actively in developing the project further.
- Working in the project has a positive effect on their daily mood.