Let their voice be heard!


The action called "The Quarantine Monologues" aims at voicing the emotions and views of teenage refugee residents of a series of accomodation facilities across Greece, during the temporary, general lockdown that was induced by the COVID19 pandemic in the period between March and May 2020.


The texts & the book "The Quarantine Monologues"

The content of this book is the result of a series of online creative writing workshops, offered to 24 teenage refugees, both boys and girls, across Greece from April to May 2020, within the framework of “The Quarantine Monologues” action.
The teenage boys and girls who participated in the action write about their experience during the coronavirus-induced lockdown in Greece. What impact did the restrictions have on their lives and what were the effects of the lockdown on their expectations, aspirations, the challenges and struggles they face every day? 
This action is part of the “It could be me – It could be you” project, an awareness raising project on refugees and human rights using drama and theatre techniques. The project has been organized and implemented since 2015 in Greece by the Hellenic Theatre/Drama & Education Network (TENet-Gr) in partnership with UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency.

In July 2020, when this publication was completed, and although most restrictive measures implemented to prevent occurrence and spread of COVID-19 cases had been lifted for the general population in Greece, there were still in place measures restricting the movement of residents in refugee reception centers on islands and accommodation facilities in the mainland, where some of the teenagers participating in this action have been staying.  



Words Are the Glue that Bonds Us Together
The series of online creative writing workshops, under “The Quarantine Monologues” action, was conceived to encourage and support creative expression through writing in teenage refugees during the April – May 2020 lockdown in Greece.

The resulting writings, collected and presented in this book, respond directly to questions such as “How did teenagers feel during the lockdown?”, “What were the values and strengths they leveraged to endure their already difficult living conditions?” and “What did they learn from the lockdown?”.

Still, their work also addresses issues that were never explicitly raised, thus constituting a unique testimony of the thoughts and experiences of a particular age group, consisting of people about to make their uncertain transition to adulthood.

One might need to read between the lines to uncover their anxiety, frustration, and disappointment, but also their strong will to live and their desire to make a new beginning. For these young people, their school and teachers as well as competence in Greek prove to be a true passport to a better life. They, therefore, worked hard to maintain their relationships with both their schoolwork and teachers throughout the lockdown, in addition to engaging in other educational and creative activities.

Upon the completion of this workshop series, we remain very grateful to these young people for all they have taught us and all we have shared. They have all now gone their separate ways. Perhaps some will leave their accommodation facilities in the future, others may move to another country and some may return to their birthplace. Nevertheless, this shared experience will continue to connect us, with words being the glue that bonds us all together.

Dimitra Didangelou, Nikos Kalaitzidis, Eleni Svoronou
Online Creative Writing Workshop Facilitators
July 2020

Organization: Hellenic Theatre/Drama & Education Network (TENet-Gr) in cooperation with the UNHCR Greece, (the UN Refugee Agency) as part of the  “it could be me – it could be you” project. “it could be me – it could be you” is an awareness raising project, targeting the educational community at large, on refugees and human rights using experiential learning, theatre and educational drama techniques.

Collaborating partners: ARSIS – Association for the Social Support of Youth, PRAKSIS, Iliaktikda Civil Non-Profit Company, Kinoniko EKAV – Social First Aid Greek Team, Regional Development Company of Parnonas S.A., Development Agency of Karditsa S.A., Secondary Education Directorate of Karditsa, International Organization for Migration in Greece.