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PRESS RELEASE Career counselling for unaccompanied minors aiming at their social integration in Thessaloniki

Career counselling, human rights training and development of skills aiming at a smooth social integration of unaccompanied minors that live in Thessaloniki, in reception facilities of ARSIS – Association for the Social Support of Youth, was the object of the project  “Human Rights Awareness and Skills Development for Unaccompanied Minors” (UAMs).

In this project that started in October 2019 and will finish at the end of June, participated more than 150 unaccompanied minors from Afghanistan, Syria, Pakistan, Palestine, Egypt, Bangladesh, Congo, Gambia, Iraq, Iran, Guinea, Cameroon, Kuwait, Morocco, Sierra Leone, Yemen, as well as stateless minors.

“I didn’t even know that so many professions exist”, “now that I know which the jobs of the future are, I have the hope that maybe I will make something of my life”. These are some of the opinions of the accompanied minors that through individual and group sessions as well as through visits and information activities in professional spaces, had the chance to realize that apart from the traditional means of earning a living (taking on their fathers’ job, pursuing an apprenticeship to a craftsman, doing manual labour) there is the possibility to follow professions relevant to their education, compatible to their skills and wishes. 

Central to the project was to design the activities on the basis of active involvement of children in the development of their professional identity,motivation for learning,integration to courses for the acquisition of professional and personal skills as well as networking with local institutions.

Despite difficulties caused by COVID-19 and the restrictions that followed, unaccompanied minors managed to actively participate in developing their professional identity, to connect the professional life with their learning experiences, to better understand the Greek and European job market, to realise that a joyful professional life is possible and to cultivate skills such as consistency, trust, initiative taking, empathy and confidence. 

The project Human Rights Awareness and Skills Development for Unaccompanied Minors (UAMs) were funded by Alstom Foundation and its target group are unaccompanied asylum seekers aged 15-18 years old that live in the reception facilities of ARSIS.

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For further information contact:  Chrisa Dotsa, Career Counselor, phone number: 0030 6947324010

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