A CGS worker spending time in Greece helping refugees has filed the following report.
Lesvos is an intense place. I’m halfway through a 2- week stay. It’s my 3rd visit to the island, and while I understand better how things work, it’s still overwhelming to see.
So far I’ve spent most of my time repairing and recouping tents. EuroRelief has dozens of brand new big 5-man tents, but the camp is so overcrowded that we simply don’t have empty ground big enough for them. So I’m trying to squeeze more life out of older smaller ones. The migrants keep coming, but no one seems to leave.
The most powerful aspect of this, obviously, is hearing people’s stories. And if you’re fortunate enough, to be a part of someone’s story. When I was here in April, I helped a guy from Iraq get settled into one of the plastic huts. I kept checking on him and we became friends. In July he was still here, and I got him to start translating for is, as his English is tremendous. Last week, I didn’t see him, so while I was disappointed, I was glad he wasn’t squeezed into Moria anymore. But I kept hearing about “Yogi”, the refugee guy who is acting caretaker/first responder at our camp on the north shore. Well, Yogi turns out to be my friend, and he is thriving up there in his new job.