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23 unaccompanied children reunite with members of their families in Switzerland

Today, we said goodbye to one of our children. Little Karim*, from METAdrasi’s Transit Accommodation Facility in Athens, waited many months for his request for family reunification to be approved. Karim is a kind child, friendly and particularly willing to learn! When, after months of patience, it was announced to him that he will fly to Switzerland where his brother lives and awaits him, his emotion overtook us all! The boy cried and laughed at the same time, hugged and kissed whoever he found in front of him, each one separately! We called his brother from the Accommodation Facility to share with him the amazing news, but little Karim couldn’t even talk to him from the tears of joy! For all of us at METAdrasi who live daily with these children, there is no greater reward than these moments and these tears of joy!

Karim is one of the 7 unaccompanied children who were in Athens, which, together with another 16 children that METAdrasi’s team of escorts transferred throughout the week to Athens from various parts of Greece – a total of 23 children – we took to the airport earlier today and are now on the plane flying to Switzerland. After a long and truly painful and distressing wait until the approval of the reunification with family members, they finally left and we hope other countries will follow the example of Switzerland and Britain and will speed up the procedures for family reunification of unaccompanied minors that are in wait.

We would like to thank Blue Star Ferries of Attica Group, who help us in our efforts by offering free ferry tickets for the transport of unaccompanied children, as well as the Department of the National Dublin Unit for the excellent cooperation.

* The name of the child has been changed to protect his personal data.