We call her Mama Stella and there's a reason why...


Her name is Mama Stella and she’s Greek. There’s actually a reason why we call her Mama. She’s got an unparalleled mother’s love. So much love to give to the world and she’s making sure everyone around her feels loved. Especially on Lesvos.

Mama Stella’s door is always open and her delicious specialities and cookies are always ready to be served, at any time of the day. She does not vaunt her help but today we met her and she had something to tell to the world.

1. Is helping others a need or a must for you?

Helping others is not just a must. It’s always been a need. For me, more than it is for those I help. I may not be able to offer everything or even enough. But any help from the heart, can make a difference.

2. What in your opinion do these people need the most? 

There’s a lot that these people need; love comes first, then health, safety, a house, good food, a job, school… What is it that you need when you’re forced from your own home? Everything I guess.

3. What do you see every time you meet them and look into their eyes?

Every time I look into their eyes I see gratitude. These people know how to appreciate and value kindness. A simple cookie can make a child happier. I love to prepare them for them. I’ll never forget the look on that father’s face, carrying two childs along with what was left of their belongings the day Moria went on fire. That day has changed my life, more than it changed theirs. And I promised myself that I’ll never stop being here for them. Never.

4. Do they tell you about their ambitions and the future they long for?

One day they will have their place in society. I really hope they will. Because everyone deserves to have a place to call home. That day will be a celebration. But also the beginning of a new journey. A journey that may also be challenging. Life is a challenge. But that’s the real journey with a purpose and we must all stand by them till then. 

5. What message would you like to send to the world? 

We don't choose in which country we're born. We don’t choose our future. But we can adapt. I feel such a joy and relief when I see how Movement On The Ground and other NGOs are doing their best to prepare these people for that day. All humans deserve the same opportunities and chances. I hope that one day, soon, all those people in power will get to keep their promises by solving the conflicts around the world. Solving the roots of the problems forcing these people from their homes. In the mean time, I’ll stay with you here, on the ground.

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