Refugee girls get inspired on Intl. Day of Women and Girls in ScienceFebruary 11 marked the fourth year of the International Day of Women and Girls in Science and the renewed commitment of over 68 countries to achieve gender equality in science. In mainland sites in north Greece, refugee children participated in inspirational activities organized by the Danish Refugee Council and discovered how much they can do.
Refugee children deserve a chance to thrive and not just survive. This is especially true for girls who often don’t make their way in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) fields.
According to the Catalyst, a global nonprofit working with leading companies to build workplaces for women across the world, less than a third of those employed in scientific research and development are women.
Given the low numbers of women professionals in these fields, DRC protection and non-formal education staff in Alexandria, Veria, Lagadikia and Nea Kavala hosting sites teamed up to make the most of the International Day of Women and Girls in Science for refugee children between 6 and 17 years old.
Screenings of videos featuring female inventors from around the world took place in Nea Kavala and Veria sites during the day and refugee children were invited to carry out experiments in physics aiming to enhance their self-efficacy and boost their confidence.
In Alexandria site, the children had the chance to listen to the experiences of Rania, one of DRC’s civil engineers and ask her questions about her choice of profession and the challenges she faced throughout her studies and her career.
For Zikra, a 14-year-old girl from Iraq, who now lives in Alexandria, the experience was one of a kind:
‘’When I say that I want to be a scientist, people around me discourage me. But when I heard Rania from DRC talking about her decision in life, I felt that I can overcome any obstacle but only if I try hard,” she says.
In Lagadikia site, the discussions focused on the presentation of each science field and the career pathways children could pursue. This brought a lot of enthusiastic questions on relevant subjects, and the children were finally asked to do paintings about what they want to do in the future.
DRC continuously seeks to empower refugee communities in nine refugee sites across Greece, in cooperation with @IOMGreece and with support from the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund of the European Union #AMIF #DGHOME #EUHome Affairs.