Almost 2,800 migrant and refugee children staying at facilities across Greece attended school in 2018 with help for a second year from a European Union-funded transportation service, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said.
IOM chief William Lacy Swing said the program, which involves the participation of the Education Ministry, is key to promoting the newcomers’ integration into Greek society.
“I am pleased to see these children get back into the school system, especially after the hardships and deprivations they have endured,” Swing said. “Gaps in education can be devastating, not only to a child’s development, but also to society in general,” he added.
“Education is priceless in its own right. But less talked about is its power to help the children and their families join in and build links to the local communities,” he said.
IOM said 88 school buses with 117 chaperones transported 2,800 children from 26 accommodation centers to 123 nearby schools daily. Students were also equipped with school kits – including notebooks, pens, pencils and other necessary supplies.