Za’atar NGO Turned 4 Years Old in 2020!

Za’atar NGO celebrated its fourth anniversary on May, 15th, this year. A great occasion to look back at this amazing adventure we’ve been living since the beginning. 

For the past four years, what had started as a common wish to create something new, something different, in the NGO world – a haven where to learn, rest and get empowered; a safe space to start building one’s future as a human being beyond one’s refugee status; has turned into an incredible human experience. Gathering refugees and volunteers from all around the world, promoting an ethical, intersectional and humble approach to social work in order to accompany, support and work with the beneficiaries in the most horizontal and collaborative way, Za’atar NGO has given birth to a strong and unique community. 

Dedicated to the social inclusion and empowerment of refugees and asylum seekers, paying specific attention to the most vulnerable of them – single women and mothers, LGBTQIA+ individuals – Za’atar NGO founders and team believe people are more than their legal status and that migrating, which can happen to any of us, should not define one’s entire person nor existence, should not prevent anyone from achieving their projects and working on new ones. 

In this perspective, Za’atar NGO founders, after opening the Orange House, day-center offering language classes, professional job-trainings and more – guitar and dance lessons, introduction to computing, free visits to Athenian museums, etc.; along with hosting the women shelter, launched Project Layali, a not-for-profit social enterprise. Its aim is to create small businesses that employ refugees and migrants in Athens. From this were successively born the Layali Shop – selling clothes, accessories and jewellery created by refugees themselves, Layali Salon – eco-friendly hair salon employing former students of the Orange House’s hairdressing job training, and Tastes of Damascus, restaurant-café offering home-made Syrian delights, hiring students of the Orange House Cooking Class as well. 

Proud of its achievements and beliefs, always working to do better; to question the status quo, and learn, Za’atar NGO founders and team are happy to celebrate those first four incredible years with you and excited for the ones to come! They are deeply grateful for all the support, volunteers and funders who have faith in their project and make it possible, every day. 

Happy 4th Birthday Za’atar, Orange House, and Project Layali Family!

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