“Welcoming Today’s Refugees”

Dr. Nadina Christopoulou from the Melissa Network of Migrant Women (left) and refugee women participating in the web chat on refugee issues (State Department Photo)

Athens, September 16, 2016 –“Welcoming Today’s Refugees” was the subject of a live, web event co-hosted September 13 by the U.S. Embassy in Athens.   NGO professionals, refugee activists, students, and academics discussed global responsibility for taking action on the refugee crisis.  Dr. Nadina Christopoulou from the Melissa Network of Migrant Women led the discussion in Athens, while Dr. Eskinder Negash of the U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants took part live from Belfast.  In Washington D.C., the State Department’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Organizations, Erin Barclay, moderated the event.

The discussion occurred ahead of President Obama’s September 20 Leaders’ Summit on Refugees, which will take place on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York.  Representatives from the Melissa Networkwill attend the Leaders’ Summit to discuss the refugee situation in Greece.  In addition to the participants in Greece, the U.S. Embassies in Macedonia, Albania, Italy, Serbia, Bosnia and Cyprus all hosted viewing parties for the discussion.

In Athens, the discussion was hosted at Impact Hub, one of the partners, along with the Onassis Culture Center and the U.S. Embassy, of an upcoming hackathon on refugee issues.  The web discussion framed critical issues, including integration, education, health care, and employment for which the hackathon seeks to find solutions.

Look for more information soon for to participate in the hack!  The hackathon will take place in two rounds:  team formation and brainstorming will run October 21-22, and app and prototype development will occur all weekend, December 2-4.  In addition to the three local partners, UK-basedInternational Alert and Creative Associates in the U.S. will serve as contributing experts and consultants to the hackathon.

You can watch a replay of the webchat here: