More than 90 children and adolescents, as well as staff of Closed Child Protection Institutions have benefited in this first year of its action.
How do children who live in an Institution experience adolescence? Can they dream of their future and which choices are available to them on their journey towards finding a working position in the labour market? These are some of the issues that EXELIXI ZOIS deals with on a daily basis, through its multidimensional action.
Its goal is to create the appropriate conditions so that all children’s lives develop smoothly, without injustice - with optimism and confidence.
Its mission is to offer a big, strong embrace to adolescents 12-17 years old and young adults 18-25 years old, who live in Closed Child Protection Institutions and to contribute to their healthy development, so that they become independent, self-sufficient and active members in society.
The Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) was a Donor from the early beginnings of this Nonprofit Civil Partnership. Thanks to the establishing donation of SNF and the wide network of its partners, EXELIXI ZOIS organizes and coordinates actions related to education and vocational guidance, sports, artistic development and social welfare, as well as the psychological support of young people.
Specifically, since the first year of functioning, the following have taken place:
- 236 Career Counseling & Vocational Guidance Sessions
- 14,000 hours of Formal Education, Special Needs Education & Parallel Support
- 595 Psychological Support & Empowerment Sessions
- 70 Visual Art Workshops & 9 Cultural & Recreational Activities outside Institutions
- 35 Sports Actions inside & outside of Institutions
- It has created jobs for about 50 professionals, scientific staff and external partners.
- Provides support to the staff of the institutions through special programs.
At the first phase of the program, that began in June 2019, the following institutions are getting integrated:
SOS Children’s Village Vari & Youth House,
Youth House Athens in P.Faliro ,
St. Alexandros Home of Females of P. Faliro,
Christodoulio Female Orphanage.
The team of EXELIXI ZOIS (Life Evolution) has accomplished the mapping and listing of the needs of a representative sample of Closed Child Protection Institutions in Greece. The recording showed that all the structures needed to support the educational sector with remedial teaching courses, the psychosocial sector with individualized psychotherapy of the beneficiaries and dialogue groups with caregivers, sports and visual art activities, in order to enrich the children's program and receive a holistic approach. What was considered as necessary is the support of the autonomy of the beneficiaries who are over 18 years old, since concern must be shown to support their accommodation, their connection with the labour market and their psychosocial empowerment. Therefore, the scientific team of EZ has proceeded in creating best practices, concerning the Plan for Self-Sufficiency of young people from 18-25 years of age, who live in institutions, with the ultimate aim of their smooth integration into society and finding a permanent job.
Beneficiaries of EXELIXI ZOIS reflect their positive imprint in their lives offered by its action.
“EXELIXI ZOIS helped me move a step higher. I’ve been able to engage with Photography, which was something I wanted and loved and now I’m an active member of their team, since I photograph its actions.” S., 18 years old
"If it wasn’t for EXELIXI ZOIS, we wouldn’t have passed the exams for the First Certificate in English (Lower)” J. & E., 17 years old
"I am looking forward to turning into 18 so EXELIXI ZOIS will help me find a job, move on and make it” E., 17 years old
The President and CEO of EXELIXI ZOIS, Dimitra Kalantoni states:
"Our vision in EXELIXI ZOIS is, through our action, to contribute to a society that gives equal opportunities for a smooth development in the lives of all children without injustice, where, they will reap the benefits of their fundamental rights and will act tomorrow as active self-sufficient citizens. Furthermore, the future is the children! I would like to thank wholeheartedly the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, as the establishment of the EXELIXI ZOIS proved feasible thanks to their valuable assistance. "
EXELIXI ZOIS with its action and offer proves that within a year a lot can be done, so that all children envision a better future.
A few words for LIFE EVOLUTION
EXELIXI ZOIS (LIFE EVOLUTION) was founded in March 2018 and is addressed to adults and young teenagers or adolescents coming from any Closed Child Protection Institutions. The Donor for EXELIXI ZOIS action was from the very first moment the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) with their founding donation. Through support services, such as educational and counselling programmes, psychological support programmes in addition to children's contact with sporting , cultural and visual art activities, it seeks to facilitate their integration into society, giving them self-confidence to move forward dynamically in life, leaving any unpleasant experiences in the past. The Vision of the Nonprofit Civil Partnership is to create a bridge which will foster the smooth transition of its beneficiaries from one age bracket to the other, with the ultimate aim of their independent and autonomous living.