New Project with Refugees in Greece

Our executive director, Danielle Gold, just returned from a trip to Greece to lay the groundwork for a new Fearless Planet project. With our implementing partner, ORT International (, we’re initiating a vocational training project for refugee women in Greece. The program will include IT training in high-demand areas such as computer programing, graphic design, and animation, as well as cellphone and laptop repair, a food lab for product development and culinary skill training, and a sewing workshop. All programs will provide training in both hard and soft skills needed for employment in these areas and to to successfully market services and products. In conjunction with the vocational training, psychosocial support will be provided to address trauma and help women with the transition of leaving their homeland and living in a new country. Our pilot project, located on the island of Samos near the refugee camp which currently houses more than 5,000 asylum seekers, will launch in May 2019 in collaboration with Swiss Cross Help ( who have recently opened a community center for refugees on Samos. We’ll be piloting our first training in cellphone repair, creating an expressive art therapy program for women and children, and opening our first food lab where Chef Daniel Taddese will teach a range of culinary skills from bread making and charcuterie to knife skills. While on the Island of Lesvos last week, Dr Gold facilitated a workshop for international NGO staff and volunteers on healing secondary trauma in humanitarian aid workers. Participants came from the Danish Refugee Counsel, Fenix Legal Aid, Better Days, and other organizations. Refugees continue to cross the strait from Turkey to Lesvos in unsafe, overcrowded rafts. While Dr Gold was on Lesvos a group of fifty refugees were trafficked across the strait in a sea so rough that ferry service had been suspended that day. During the course of their three kilometer crossing a nine year old girl tragically drown. Providing assistance to refugees fleeing into Greece is a priority for Fearless Planet at this time. We aim to develop vocational training centers in strategic locations in Greece to provide an opportunity for a healthy and prosperous new start for refugee women and their families.