Second Tree is a community-led, volunteer-run, grassroots NGO working with refugees in  Northern Greece. Our founders were volunteers who – moved by the arrival of people on European shores in 2016 – met in Katsikas Refugee Camp and decided to leave their old lives and build an organisation that first and foremost treats refugees like the people they are.

Their vision resonated with many others. Since 2017, the team has had more than 120 people from all over the world who have donated their time and skills to stand in solidarity with refugees.

SECOND TREE takes its name from the following proverb:

The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago,

the second best time is now.

Our belief is that it is never too late to take action and work towards making a positive difference in the world.

Our Mission

To change the way refugees are perceived by modeling an approach to community engagement that strengthens agency and enables each individual to reach their true potential. 

Our Vision

We aim to improve the lives of refugees by creating a society where they are seen as unique human beings first and foremost – with their own history, skills, interests and needs – and not just as bearers of a ‘refugee’ identity. 

TEAM on the ground

Second Tree was founded by volunteers, and volunteers remain the backbone of our organisation. 


Meet our long-term TEAM

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"You will always struggle with not feeling productive until you accept that your own joy can be something you produce." - Hank Green

People and Culture Associate from Hertfordshire, UK
Carolina Quaranta

"When it gets down to having to use violence, then you are playing the system’s game. The establishment will irritate you – pull your beard, flick your face – to make you fight. Because once they’ve got you violent, then they know how to handle you. The only thing they don’t know how to handle is non-violence and humor." ― John Lennon

Admin Associate from Milan, Italy

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world” – Nelson Mandela

Ciara Macken
Adult Education Coordinator from Los Angeles, California

“If we do act, in however small a way, we don’t have to wait for some grand utopian future. The future is an infinite succession of presents, and to live now as we think human beings should live, in defiance of all that is bad around us, is itself a marvelous victory.” – Howard Zinn

Media Policy & Fundraising Director from Bosnia and Qatar

"I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life's a bitch. You've got to go out and kick ass." – Maya Angelou

Gaelle Perrigault
Youth Programme Officer from Rennes, France

“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

President from Florence, Italy

“Washing one’s hands of the conflict between the powerful and the powerless means to side with the powerful, not to be neutral.” – Paulo Freire

Programmes Director from Cheltenham, UK

"Life is not about how many times you fall down. It's about how many times you get back up." – Jaime Escalante

Communications & Fundraising Coordinator from Dublin, Ireland

"Even the smallest person can change the course of the future." - JRR Tolkien

Jeanne Boistay
Logistics coordinator from Rennes, France

"We are what we do, especially what we do to change what we are.” — Eduardo Galeano

Juliette Capoulade Murphy
Human Resources and Volunteer Coordinator from Glasgow, UK

"The only way to deal with an unfree world is to become so absolutely free that your very existence is an act of rebellion." - Albert Camus

Lefteris Karagiannis
Greek Teacher from Ioannina, Greece

"A dwarf standing on the shoulders of a giant may see farther than a giant himself." - R. Burton

Martina Todisco
Media Policy & Fundraising Associate from Desenzano del Garda, Italy

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” – Martin Luther King

Myrna van Wolven
Grants coordinator from Doetinchem, the Netherlands

"Hate is baggage. Life's too short to be pissed off all the time. It's just not worth it" - Danny Vinyard

Pedro Martin Secades
Grants & Admin Officer from Madrid, Spain

"In a gentle way, you can shake the world." -Mahatma Gandhi

Rachel Lynn
Social Media Manager from Wellington, Ohio

We are built on the time, effort and feedback of so many others. Come and meet them! 

Our Partners

Second Tree has had the privilege to partner with respected organisations from all over the world.