Do you like sports? Care about refugees? Want to combine the two? We are always looking for people to come and engage with our community, help us to lead exercise classes and perhaps teach us all a new sport or skill!
We are looking for enthusiastic and caring people who want to make a difference. You don't have to be a professional in sports, but if you can bring energy, a passion for helping others and a willingness to get involved, we would love to hear from you!
THE NETHERLANDS - SEPTEMBER 2019
I spent the most wonderful 10 days in Greece with the inspiring Brittany, who followed through her heart's desire to set up REFUGYM in order to offer refugees escapism and ownership through exercise classes they run themselves for their community.
The daily aerobic classes with powerwomen simultaneously breastfeeding their baby, and the enthusiasm of participants overcoming fears in swimming classes left a very big impression.
This is my shout out to Britts for being the butterfly in this movement and thank you to the residents for their love, strength and hospitality.
SCOTLAND - APRIL TO JULY 2019
Working alongside Britt was a constant source of inspiration. Her strong-willed, fierce, determined mind works in harmony with her kind and patient heart. I saw both REFUGYM and Britt evolve and adapt in my two months with them.
REFUGYM provides a safe and consistent space for personal, physical and emotional development and growth. Physical activity has the potential to unite disadvantaged populations, building resilience and community.
REFUGYM allows children a safe place to play, to experience the innate joy of sport. The charity encourages women to reclaim their bodies and their voice, and gives men the space to let off steam, build relationships and train.
From yoga to hiking, gymnastics to volleyball, Britt and her team are working incredibly hard to address issues such as mental health, body image and gender-based discrimination - topics so often missed by responses to displacement.
USA - SEPTEMBER 2018 TO MAY 2019
I arrived in Greece 10 months ago with plans to stay for 2-4 weeks and ended up returning 3 times and staying for 6 months. I dramatically changed these plans because of my love of humanitarian aid and working with refugees, but mostly because of my not so subtle obsession with Britt and her organization REFUGYM.
Britt is unwaveringly positive, tirelessly dedicated, and the model of a truly good humanitarian and person. Her project is the culmination of years of training, experience, and enthusiasm and it is exactly what the refugee crisis needs.
With REFUGYM what you see is what you get, real people doing good work in a bad situation, authentic human interaction and carefree fun. In the six months I was there, I have seen not only a dramatic change in the mental and physical health of the residents but also in camaraderie and community throughout camp, a testament to the success of Brittany’s initiative and to her leadership ability. REFUGYM is an exceptional organization and being a part of their team and community has been the greatest privilege of my life.
SWITZERLAND - FEBRUARY TO OCTOBER 2019
This year, I came back to Greece three times to volunteer with REFUGYM.
No matter if it was winter and freezing cold or summer and boiling hot, the energy in the sports building and sports tent was always amazing. With many different sports classes REFUGYM provides a save space where refugees can escape from their miserable and desperate daily life in the camp.
Almost all of the classes are guided by the refugees themselves, what gives them the opportunity to take over responsibility and to train their teaching skills. While teaching a class they can boost their self-confidence, by playing football in a team friendships develop and during a gymnastics class kids can improve their physical health. Things no one can ever take away from them and which might be useful for their future.
The most beautiful thing for me was that all of us where just humans supporting each other in every possible way. For example happened it almost every day that the kids tried to teach me new gymnastics skills and people, sitting in front of their containers, provided me cold water for my thirsty body.
A part of my heart will always be with REFUGYM and all the camp residents which made me feel so welcome in their community. I feel incredible grateful to be called teacher Zoé and to call Britt, the founder of REFUGYM, my friend!
FRANCE - FEBRUARY TO MARCH 2019
REFUGYM... what a wonderful initiative Brittany has had. Who would have thought music and sport would make so many peaceful smiles appear on refugees faces ? Because, it really does. It creates this pure and peaceful happiness they haven’t had the chance to feel for such a long time. It is the kind of NGO that doesn’t only help refugees to survive, it also gives them the desire and the joy of living!
Thanks to REFUGYM and its volunteers, women can finally feel free to externalise and be themselves far from any kind of oppression and violence they’ve suffered and might still suffer from. It’s days where, everyone forgets about their problems and dances with the beat of love!
I am so thankful I found this organisation and met those inspiring volunteers to spend a month with, I’ve never felt SO useful to others, and that is thanks to REFUGYM.