Students of the Wadham SU are preparing to set a motion so as to continue an existing link between the college and the Greek ECHO Refugee Library.
In Michaelmas term last year, the Wadham SU passed a motion to donate £300 to the ECHO Refugee Library in Athens and begin a relationship of donating books with the help of volunteers. As ex Wadham student Hannah-Lily Lanyon noted on the SU Facebook page however, no further action has been taken since. As a result a new drive to continue support has been launched.
“They are going to donate the books and hopefully organise a college wide book donation program!” Lanyon commented, “And hopefully they will donate more but if any other colleges want to that would be great as there is obviously an affinity between the university and the library project as spaces for learning.”
The ECHO Refugee Library project began in August 2016 with the first library in the Vasilikarefugee camp. The camp was a host to 1,205 refugees and has been frequently reported tohave unsuitable conditions. Since the first library, ECHO created a mobile library that has beenlocated in Athens since 2017.
The closing of the Greek-Macedonian border in March 2016 drastically exacerbated the refugee situation in Greece, prompting Migration Minister Dimitris Vitsas to predict that there could be more than 90,000 refugees in Greece by the end of the year. Continued police evictions of refugees from EU/UNHCR emergency housing, according to Lanyon, have further stymied more sustained progress in the camp.
Image Credit: generalising