“The innovative DIΑ- drasis program is a challenge for all of us!”, stresses Aristi Tzoni, Head of the YMCA Action and Social Offering Sector as well as responsible for the program, and continues: “We expect – by the end of the 8-month pilot project- to have created specific educational material, to make friends from different cultures and to find supporters for the program. Mostly, of course, the children and the parents who choose our space to color their time with beautiful and creative memories. All my gratitude to the educational staff, collaborators and volunteers of DIA-drasis, for giving their soul during the preparation of the program, and of course to our supporters – donors ”

The Sector of Action & Social Offering of YMCA designed, organized and implements the program “DIA- drasis: Children’s Center for the Development of Social Skills”. Since the beginning of October, a new space is working –with the concession of the Municipality of Thessaloniki at the junction of 6A Prassakaki and Koukoufli 2 with an educational and intercultural character . It is working in two distinguished operational zones: morning and afternoon.

Everyday in the morning, children refugees aged 2 to 4 participate in a bilingual educational program in Greek and Arabic. The purpose of the Preschool Education Program is to prepare refugee children for their smooth integration into the Greek school and to support the whole family at the same time. The future aim of the program is to gradually include other languages in order to better cover the needs of the refugee population.

The afternoons are pleasant and creative for the children aged 2.5 to 6 years old at the Children’s Center DIA-drasis, with intercultural activities. Children either alone either with their parents will have the opportunity to share the benefits of multilingualism and multiculturalism and develop their social skills through intercultural interaction. The themes of the workshops are varied, from visual arts to performing arts or natural sciences and technology. The workshops will be carried out by qualified collaborators and pedagogues.

Good luck to all of us!