Initiative “Never Alone - Building our future with children and youth arriving in Europe”
European Programme for Integration and Migration (EPIM)

In 2019, the John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation participated in and supported the Europe-wide initiative “Never Alone” of the European Programme for Integration and Migration (EPIM), by implementing a funding programme in response to the particularly urgent situation of unaccompanied children and youth arriving in Greece. In order to contribute to building a strong child protection system based on models promoting social integration of children and youth on the move that are now in Greece, EPIM, in collaboration with the Latsis Foundation, announced a public call for the submission of proposals aimed at the development of quality models of alternative care and/or the support of youth in their transition to adulthood and autonomy, with emphasis placed on access to education, vocational training and/or the labour market.

The initiative that was selected and supported through the “Never Alone” Fund is entitled “Transitioning to Adulthood: A Path To Autonomy and Self-Reliance”; it has a two-year duration and is implemented by the Velos Youth organisation, in collaboration with HumanRights360 and the Babel Day Centre. The objective of this activity is for young immigrants and refugees aged 16-21 to become empowered and independent, and transition smoothly to adulthood. The three collaborating organisations will jointly develop a holistic approach for transition to adulthood and integration, as well as a new advocacy strategy that is adapted to the main challenges these young people face, such as lack of integration activities, employability and access to psychological care.

  • 25 young refugees have been supported through the programme up to now.

More specifically, support will be provided through the programme in key areas of the new daily life of these young people:

  • Access to Velos Youth; a safe space where they will be able to participate in activities for the development of their personal and social skills under the guidance of an experienced team of professionals.
  • Provision of personalised support by the Velos Youth social workers via one-on-one sessions, in order to determine their needs and connect them with the appropriate services.
  • Access to education through the LEAP (Learning & Education Action Plan) tool developed by Velos Youth, which encourages one-on-one dialogue so that the young people can realise their learning and educational capabilities and needs, in order to plan, and ultimately achieve, small and gradual goals.
  • Provision of psychological support to youth in need of psychological and emotional support, who will be referred to the Babel Day Centre. Specialised psychologists will perform clinical assessments, as well as personal counselling and psychotherapy, while psychotherapy groups will also be established, if this is deemed appropriate and therapeutic. Furthermore, support will also be provided at the individual’s environment.
  • Support of the youth in terms of their employability. Specialised advisers of HumanRights360 will record their skills, offer guidance regarding vocational training opportunities and integration into the labour market, as well as support on procedural issues.


“This partnership among NGOs (Velos Youth, HumanRights360, Babel) aims to serve the needs of young refugees who reside in insecure conditions. Young persons are facing major challenges and therefore, there is the need for a holistic approach, including support and education of youngsters and the improvement of the support mechanisms. Through our advocacy interventions of the project, we aim to tackle issues that arise so that young persons could have equal access to health, education, employment and accommodation. In other words, to have a secure, dignified and more qualitative life, by being able to have full opportunities to practice their human rights.”

Epaminondas Farmakis

Founder, HumanRights360


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