We started our very early morning with a fairy ride back to Athens. Before we left Aegina we got to see a great deal of snow on the ground and on the cars-a very unusual occurance for the island as you may have previously read. They even closed all the schools in Aegina due to the “extreme weather conditions.”
Once we arrived back in Athens, we quickly dropped off our luggage at our new home for the remainder of our time in Greece and headed to volunteer. We had the privilege of volunteering at the refugee camp for a few hours. They store all of the donations they receive from different countries such as Spain, Ireland, Poland, Northern Greece, and many others in an abandoned basketball stadium. They have boxes stacked all the way to the ceiling in most areas throughout the airport as you can see in the picture below.
This is a picture of the basketball stadium inside that was actually used in the 2004 olympics. We were lucky enough to get to sneak a peak of the gym and take a few pictures before getting back to work.
We sorted clothes, shoes, sleeping bags, tents, and many more items in order to help organize and prepare items that will be needed over the next few weeks as it continues to get colder. It was an extremely eye opening experience for us to see how many donations are being sent from all over the world and to realize the magnitude of effect that all volunteers have during this crisis.
We also got a chance to see some of the refugees playing outside on this cold day. The remainder of the refugees are housed in the abandoned airport, old hockey stadium, and baseball stadium. You can see the airport in the above picture. There are currently 1,500 people living in the camps.
After we finished volunteering, we took the tram back to the square near our hotel and most of us were ecstatic to find those two Golden Arches, also known as, McDonald’s. Nothing cures homesickness like a quarter pounder and a large fry.
We are looking forward to the next few days of tours in Athens!!