Refugees arriving in France are tired, helpless, disoriented and most of them have suffered traumatic experiences and violence during their journey. Oftentimes, they cannot find accommodation and gather in makeshift camps in the North of Paris and its suburbs. The association Utopia 56 operates day and night times roundups to meet these vulnerable populations, distribute meals, clothes and hygiene products and inform them about the existing help programs (application for asylum, minor’s protection…) and direct them towards relevant structures.
During these roundups, members of the Utopia 56 association have noted that many women – single, in a relationship, with children or unaccompanied minors – were not supported by accommodation centres, either due to a lack of available beds, or due to the lack of information on the procedure to seek housing.
To remedy this emergency situation, the association has developed a “solidary accommodation” facility for these women and girls. This facility aims to establish connections between volunteering citizens and people seeking for an accommodation solution, who will be hosted for one or several nights in these citizens’ homes. In addition to this temporary solution, all beneficiaries will be accompanied through administrative and juridical formalities.
Moreover, unaccompanied minors will benefit from a tailored medical care in collaboration with the NGO Doctors Without Borders, before being taken charge of by Child protection services.
Founded in 2015, Utopia 56’s mission is to help migrants, refugees and exiled populations, particularly through the mobilisation and organisation of teams of volunteers and through supporting other humanitarian organisations.