Reopening for visitors

Updates from OHF

This month was a big month! We had our reopening for visitors and we’re so happy about it! Slowly there will be more and more visitors able to spend time at OHF. 

We have a registration system by the gate and currently allow a maximum of 180 visitors on OHF ground a day to keep up with social distancing. Unfortunately in the first days we had less visitors than expected. This is possibly due to the fact that the police are still keeping people inside the camp and only allowing people to leave once per week. Most people use this day outside the camp to buy groceries, visit Mytilini, etc. The freedom of movement and eased covid restrictions is mostly just applicable to local citizens and tourists and not benefitting the people inside the camp, who remain very restricted in their movements. 

Despite this, the Low-tech Maker Space, School of Peace, Ecohub and Yoga and Sports with Refugees are still running their programs, the Nest (Childspace) is open again between 10am-2pm, and our volunteer Abbas will open the barber shop, and Aref will open up the tailoring shop in early July. It has been wonderful to see people socialise, share ideas and connect again. 

The fewer number of visitors could be due as well to the fact that many of the former visitors were able to leave the island and thus two of our amazing volunteers made new direction signs to OHF. This will make it easier for people to find us from the main street! 

Computer Classes

Congratulations to our volunteers for completing a full course of Computer Classes! 

The computer classes for the community volunteers have been finished. Nine community volunteers at One Happy Family have passed their exams and got their certificates. Thanks to our teacher Hossein for never giving up! Over the past 6 months the classes have been both in person and online, paused and then restarted again, all due to the Covid-19 rules and limitations. These challenges did not stop Hossein or the participating students. 
Rahmatullah, one of the students, is happy with his new knowledge: “I learned about Microsoft Word, hardware and software of the computer. It was the first time for me. It was not as difficult as I expected it to be. Now I want to learn more and more. My future needs it.” 

For other students it was not all new: “I knew many of the things from Syria already, but it was very useful as a reminder. I would absolutely love to learn more. It was so interesting. It is very good to keep learning – learning gives new ideas,” says Abdullah. 

Abbas is happy to become more independent. “It is important to me to be able to solve my own problems and now I don’t need other people to do many things for me. I know exactly how to do it.”

On completion of the course, the students have been awarded an International Certificate of Digital Literacy (ICDL). It is an internationally recognised certificate that will allow the students to use these tangible skills in their future. 

Again, congratulations! Next step: PowerPoint, Excel, Photoshop, and as teacher Hossein says: “We will continue the ICDL-process, but the next step is also whatever the students want to learn and actually need! It is all possible.”

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