Refugee Rescue is a skilled Search and Rescue (SAR), humanitarian and non-political NGO founded in 2015. Our volunteer boat and land crew as well as rescue vessel ‘Mo Chara’ (‘My Friend’ in Irish) are currently based in Lesvos, Greece, where we have helped thousands of refugees fleeing violence, war and persecution.
Refugee Rescue is the only humanitarian and professional search and rescue organization on the Northern Shore of Lesvos
Since major organizations have moved away, Refugee Rescue has constantly struggled to continue their operations. Since October 2017, Refugee Rescue remains as the only humanitarian and professional search and rescue left on the Northern Shore of Lesvos.
People are still crossing the short stretch between Turkey and Lesvos every day. Dinghies often directly navigate towards dangerous rocks or shallows that can easily break the floor of dinghies causing them to sink or capsize. Smugglers often abandon groups of refugees on rocks and inaccessible beaches. Many boats also land on treacherous rocks and people are then stuck on small islands or other locations that are difficult to reach. There is no cliff rescue, no helicopter and people are often impossible to reach from land.
Last year alone 11,549 people landed on Lesvos. UNCHR has recorded 3,963 arrivals on the Greek islands since the start of 2018, including 2,027 on Lesvos. Arrivals during the months of January and February were 17% higher than those of 2017.
Our mission is to remain active 24/7 protecting everybody fleeing war, violence and persecution and preventing more deaths at sea. By being human and showing compassion, we remain on the Northern Shore of Lesvos to assist people at sea and land.
Last updated 27.03.2018