In 2011 the number of migrants and refugees that arrived to Europe was growing at a high rate, as a consequence of the instability caused by the Arab Spring. For this reason, INTERSOS started the Migration Unit, which is part of its organizational structure, and is responsible for the coordination of the projects in support of migrants and refugees in Italy and, more broadly, in the Mediterranean.
The same year the A28 center was inaugurated, and provided night-time shelter to unaccompanied and separated children transiting in Rome. Later on, INTERSOS expanded its activities to Greece and Serbia in response to the intensification of migration in the Mediterranean.
In the last years, European policies on Migration have been characterized by a markedly stronger securitarian stance. Migration is now considered – and therefore treated – mostly as threat to public order, and framed in terms of risk containment.
In this context, INTERSOS diversified its intervention to provide:
- Legal and social information service;
- Basic medical assistance;
- Psychological support;
- Night-time and day-time reception for unaccompanied and separated children (UASC) transiting through Rome, at the new INTERSOS 24 center;
- Outreach activities;
- Training and capacity-building for frontline workers in reception centers;
- Recreational and social activities for UASC (such as job-placement workshops);
- Allocation of housing to refugees to foster autonomy (in Greece);
- Support to local organizations (in Greece).
In 2018, INTERSOS Migration Unit coordinates projects in Italy, Greece and Libya.
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