Our Story

Who started Happy Caravan?

   
 The idea of Happy Caravan was inspired by a Syrian refugee himself through his work as a volunteer in a refugee camp in Greece. During his time volunteering at the camp, Alaeddin Janid saw the severe lack of structure and loss of education for children in the camp.

How did it start?

   
He began by teaching the children the alphabet and later purchased a TV for 20 euros to create an outdoor cinema showing movies in English.
When Alaeddin returned to the Netherlands, where he was living at the time, he began to build the idea of Happy Caravan – a school of English & Creativity for refugee children.
slide1
Screenshot 2020-04-10 at 13.57.45

Thermopylae

   
Soon after, Alaeddin located a refugee camp in Thermopylae, Greece, with a building onsite that was seemingly suitable for a school. By May 2017, Happy Caravan was up and running in this camp — offering education, art, and entertainment for children.

Malakasa

   

At the start of 2019, Happy Caravan management team, attended a camp administration meeting at Malakasa camp.

At this meeting, the administration announced that 70 unregistered families were living in tents in the camp, without access to any services, including education.

After learning this, Happy Caravan offered to open a school to provide education for these children. Within two days, we opened our 2nd school in Malakasa camp.

Happy Academy

(2019 summer – winter)

   

In late 2018 we formed a partnership with a group of students from Erasmus University College of Rotterdam, This passionate team of 7 had the idea of creating an extension program of Happy Caravan – Happy Academy. 

Happy Academy caters to women and teenagers (children ages 14 – 18). The daily program consists of various English courses, Technology and Graphic Design, and other core skills development courses. 

Happy Caravan Online School

   
Our schools in the camps have been temporally closed since March 12th because of COVID-19. However, we won’t let that keep our students from learning!Our volunteers and team from around the world are coming together to support our students virtually with daily homework, teaching videos and other activities!

TEDx talk given by our founder, Alaeddin Janid