09:48 AM

Global experiences


Mohawk students to spend 10 days working at refugee camp in Greece

In October 2018, 12 students from Mohawk College will be travelling to Chalkida, Greece to volunteer in the Ritsona Refugee Camp for 10 days.

The camp sits 20 minutes away from the beautiful city of Chalkida, Greece. Formerly an air force base, the Ritsona Refugee Camp was funded by the United Arab Emirates and the Red Cross to address the influx of migrants that began entering Greece in 2015. The students will work at a distribution centre managed by a not-for-profit called Cross-Cultural Solutions (CCS). The centre provides camp residents with clean water, clothing, tea, and milk. Mohawk has partnered with CCS to give students the opportunity to work at the centre. The students will be under the direction CCS’s Refugee program and faculty from Mohawk throughout their two-week stay.

In the months leading up to the trip, the students have been attending bi-monthly meetings to engage in team building exercises and plan fundraising events. One of the needs at the Ritsona camp distribution centre is black leggings for women and girls so the students will running a “black legging drive” to gather as many leggings as possible to donate to the distribution centre.

The students are also receiving inter-cultural competency training to better understand the culture of the people they will be in contact with as well as lessons in the Arabic language, as Arabic is the main language spoken by people living at Ritsona. All of the students will achieve a General Elective credit called “Global Experience,” after successfully completing the program. The students will be in Greece from October 16 to October 27, 2018.

The Chalkida trip and other international projects including a project in Jamaica are among a series of new experiential learning opportunities being introduced by Mohawk and funded in part by the Province. Mohawk  received $1.1 million through the Province’s Career Ready Fund. Part of the Career Kick-Start Strategy, the Career Ready Fund helps publicly-assisted colleges and universities, employers and other organizations create experiential learning opportunities for postsecondary students and recent grads.

For further information on the project or if you would like to donate black leggings, please feel free to contact any of the following people involved in the project:

Kelley Hoyt, Faculty lead at kelley.hoyt@mohawkcollege.ca

Ryan Iles, Faculty of the Global Experience Course at ryan.iles@mohwkcollege.ca

Emilee Champigny, student representative for the group at emilee.champigny@mohawkcollege.ca