Greek solidarity group helps stranded refugees
2 June 2015 / Chris Palitzsch / Demotix / Global
"Every day several hundred refugees are stranded on the Aegean islands of Greece. As there exists no state-run support system, a solidarity group has formed in Kos to distribute food, clothes, shoes, toilet paper and hygienic towels."

(The website is no longer in existence, however we still have contact with the editor/photographer. Here is a photo taken by her)


Amazing teachers
20 June 2015 / Sam Barratt / Avaaz (Organization) / Twitter / Global

""We have no shoes, we have just one pair of clothes." Kids kitted out in Kos by amazing teachers & Avvaz members" (Copy this URL to your browser)


21 June 2015 / Denis Spilet / Oceanews / France

"Ce 15 juin 2015 en début d’après-midi, à l’heure où une grande partie de l’activité s’arrête pour ne reprendre qu’à 18h, dans un restaurant devenu leur QG, des membres de l’association « Solidarité Kos » se préparent. Avec eux, 400 repas chauds, mais aussi du pain et des fruits frais."
"Solidarité Kos distribue ainsi un repas par jour, mais également des vêtements, des chaussures, quelques jouets pour les enfants. De manière régulière, ils effectuent un grand nettoyage du camp."

(The website is no longer in existence, however we still have contact with the editor/photographer. Here are some photos 1 2 3 4 5 taken by him. His article is also available.)


Auf der Insel Kos: Weltpolitik trifft auf Urlaubsstimmun 
8 July 2015 / MDR  Mitteldeutscher Rundfunk/ Germany

Griechenlands Inseln trotzen der Krise. Wir haben in den Tagen vor dem Referendum Hotelbesitzer und deutsche Touristen besucht. Und die zweite Krise erlebt: die Flüchtlingsströme.

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Humanitäre Katastrophe in der Ägäis: Griechenland geht in die Knie – EU versagt
9 July 2015 / Pro Asyl (Organization) / Germany
"Auf Kos organisieren Helferinnen und Helfer täglich die Ausgabe von 500 Mahlzeiten. Seit Ende Mai sammeln sie Nahrungsmittel bei Hotels und Restaurants ein, um sie an die Flüchtlinge zu verteilen. Etliche Freiwillige, die sich in der Unterstützergruppe „Kos Solidarity“ organisiert haben, stellen so eine Notversorgung sicher, um das Überleben der Flüchtlinge auf der Insel zu ermöglichen."


14 July 2015 /Reporter: Barbara Miller/ ABC / Australia

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Kos volunteers close down migrant food project
3 August 2015 / BBC / UK-Global

"A volunteer group on the Greek island of Kos that was feeding nearly 1,000 migrants a day says it is closing after running out of time and money."

"The 30 to 40 volunteers behind the Kos Solidarity Project were using their own funds to buy supplies and relying on donations from hotel unions.
But with little support from local officials, the project's volunteers served their final meals on Sunday.
They now hope the Greek authorities will step in to help feed the migrants'
"We had to prepare the food and that takes many hours and a lot of money," he said. "We don't have much money, we are not officials, we are just a group of friends."​


En Grèce, l’île de Kos débordée par les migrants
17 August 2015 / Charlotte Bozonnet / Le Monde / France-Global

Devant l’inertie des autorités, un groupe de solidarité a été monté par des habitants de l’île. « En mai, il y a eu un incendie au Captain Elias, on s’est dit que ça ne pouvait plus durer, qu’il fallait faire quelque chose », raconte Sotiris Palaskas, un jeune professeur de grec et de littérature, attablé dans un restaurant du port. Pendant deux mois, lui et plusieurs dizaines d’autres personnes vont récolter de la nourriture auprès des hôtels et des commerçants de la ville pour nourrir les réfugiés, leur offrir du savon, du lait…


L’«hotel» di Kos Solidarity
21 August 2015 / Francesca Coin / Il Manifesto / Italy

Kos Solidarity, uno dei pochi gruppi di solidarietà ai rifugiati auto-organizzati nell’isola. «Lavoriamo insieme da maggio» spiega, «da quando ci siamo accorti che se non avessimo fatto qualcosa noi, non avrebbe fatto nulla nessuno».
«All’inizio venivamo qui intorno alle 14, appena terminato il lavoro» ricorda, «E ci mettevamo a cucinare 5–600 pasti».


Migrant crisis: The volunteers stepping in to help
3 September 2015 / Joel Gunter / BBC / UK-Global

""We have no choice," says Mr Chertofilis. "People are starving, we cannot leave them like this. We cannot do that."
So the physics teacher's summer holiday has been spent fundraising, cooking, and distributing food and clothes to the thousands of desperate people arriving on the island. His Kos Solidarity Project now has 50 volunteers and collects donations from many more.
Led by Mr Chertofilis, ordinary men and women on Kos are working for hours before and after their day jobs, often from the break of dawn until late into the night, in an attempt to stem the humanitarian disaster unfolding on their doorsteps."


Greek Volunteers Step Up to Help Refugees
10 September 2015 / AJ+ / Global

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Volunteers help refugees survive while Europe’s leaders still search for solutions 
21 September 2015 / Eliza Goroya, Khairunissa Dhala and Lorna Hayes / Amnesty international (Organization) / Global

“There was this Syrian family: a father with a small girl. She tried to open the door of my car. I thought she must be after the food, so I asked her father what they need. ‘You have the same car as us,’ he responded, ‘but ours exploded back in Syria. Her mother died in it.’
“And then I understood what the little girl was looking for."
Konstantinos, a volunteer, looks away as he shares this story with me.


Erste Welt trifft Dritte Welt auf der Insel Kos
23 September 2015 / Griechenland Zeitung / Germany-Greece


Reportage for Kos Solidarity and Flying Help on Taiwanese TV
14 January 2016 / DaAi Journal / Taiwan

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Refugee Highway (Documentary by Chronis Pechlivanidis)
28 January 2016 / Solidarity Now / Greece

Solidarity Now is a growing network of people and organisations working together to support those hardest hit by the crisis in Greece.


Sharing with Company – Kos Solidarity
31 January 2016 / The Community Kouzina Project / Australia

“Kos Solidarity mobilised in Springtime when a group of concerned residents met outside the abandoned Captain Elias Hotel (the unofficial designated temporary residence for refugees) and decided to band together. Initially, Kos did not have the international presence of NGOs, Aid organisations and volunteers that arrived during the summer and Kos Solidarity formed quite rapidly without a donor or bureaucratic support. Residents of all ages and professions, many of whom were already engaged in full time employment, dedicated their summer, their free time and weekends to helping people in need.”

“Using their own kitchens, members of Kos Solidarity cooked meals for refugees during the early days of the group’s formation (and intermittently since). Traditional Greek dishes such as rice and spinach, pasta and baked potatoes were served to people residing in tent communities. “If I can give ten people food to eat. I know that is 10 people who are not hungry. We would cut one watermelon into 100 pieces and hand it out. Thanasis was baking potatoes with lemons, he would bring them so hot and warm, I was asking to eat them!” explained member, Milka.”


Migrant crisis: Greek volunteers welcome Nobel nomination
1 February 2016/ Joel Gunter / BBC / UK-Global

“George Chertofilis, the president of the Kos Solidarity Group, said a win would "give meaning to the work we do".
Kos Solidarity is one of 16 volunteer groups from the Aegean Islands nominated on Sunday for the award.
They were nominated by more than 230 academics from universities including Oxford, Harvard, and Princeton.”


Tear gas fired as tensions flare on Greek island of Kos over refugee 'hot spot'
16 February / Margaret Evans / CBS News / Usa-World

George Chartofilis runs a refugee charity called Kos Solidarity. He's in favour of the hot spot idea, saying that people's tempers are fraying and that dignified, safe accommodation for the migrants is in everyone's interest.
"We cannot know how this year's summer will develop. There is already enough pressure on the locals. They feel they are being squeezed by the presence of the refugees and migrants. A negative vibe has been established." 
Perhaps everyone needs to remind themselves of one of Hippocrates' more famed declarations: "Make a habit of two things. To help. Or at least to do no harm."


"Welcome in Greece" - Island-hopping & mountain-biking  
22 April / Mike McQuaide / Luxemburger Wort  / Luxembourg
During our trip we spent an evening at Kos Solidarity’s headquarters, a storefront that’s a combination office and warehouse, with racks and shelves stuffed with donations for refugees. A trio of volunteers there gave a talk detailing their efforts to help those who end up in Kos, and told harrowing tales of having to retrieve the bodies of those who don’t survive the Turkey-Greece crossing. We were introduced too to a half dozen Pakistani refugees whom the group had helped. (These were the only refugees we saw on our trip.) "