Updates from Samos

Dear supporters of I Have Rights, 2022 was a tumultuous year for many, including for us on Samos.

While the world’s highest ever number of displaced people was counted in 2022, and most of these people were placed in neighbouring and low/middle-income countries, the European Union continues its policy of deterrence at its external borders.

The opening of the Closed Controlled Access Centre (“CCAC”) on Samos – a prison-like EU-funded facility for asylum seekers – in September 2021 created new challenges for human rights and access to asylum. It was in this environment that I Have Rights began its work in February 2022 to provide access to legal information and advocate for fair access to asylum.

Give a donation away this christmas

Before we look back at our work, as Christmas is just around the corner and some of you may still be looking for the right gift, a donation to I Have Rights in the name of a friend or family member will give the gift of giving to your loved ones this year.


A look at the past year

Over the past year we built up the organisational structures of IHR, explored our areas of work and most importantly built trust with people on the move and other organisations on Samos.

Our Legal Task Force is at the core of the I Have Rights, providing individual legal advice and representation to people on Samos.

In total, this year our team was supported by:

– 12 legal caseworkers

– 2 volunteer interpreters on Samos for French and Arabic

– 1 paid Arabic interpreter on Samos

– 1 Greek Lawyer

– 1 Legal Coordinator.

– 20 remote volunteer interpreters for Arabic, Amharic, Farsi, French, Krio and Tigrinya.

IHR supported 255 beneficiaries, including preparing 203 people for their asylum interviews.

Our Strategic Litigation Task Force was supported by 10 remote volunteers. Thanks to their work, we legally challenged injustices that would otherwise remain hidden behind CCAC’s fences. For example we submitted two complaints to UN bodies and successfully applied for interim measures at the European Court of Human Rights.

Our Advocacy and Communications Task Force consisted of 4 volunteers this year. Through their work we raised awareness of the situation on Samos, amplified the voices of people on the move in the debate around migration and asylum and advocated against human rights abuses on the island.

We would like to thank this great team for all the energy and time they have put into making I Have Rights what it is now. We are incredibly proud of what we have achieved this year and are looking forward to 2023.

We would also like to thank everyone who has supported us financially this year and made our work possible.

We hope to hear/see from you soon. Perhaps at the panel “Festung Europa” on 09.01.23 in Berlin? (program below)

We wish you all a happy holidays and a good start to the new year.


Panel ‘Festung Europa’