Live in Athens and need a cash card?
On February 1, Catholic Relief Services (CRS) started handling cash assistance for people living in private accommodation in Attica.
If you live in a private home in Athens — whether you're staying with family or friends or renting an apartment yourself — there are a few things you should know.
1. New way to apply for a cash card
If you live in a private home and need to register for a cash card, you can no longer do it by messaging Refugee.Info.
Instead, you can now apply for a cash card by calling the Greece Cash Alliance hotline. CRS operates the hotline.
Once you call the hotline, you can expect CRS to visit you to verify your residency and that your documents are valid. After that, you will need to be certified every month.
2. No one has lost their place on the waiting list
The IRC, which previously managed cash for people in private homes in Athens, had a list of people who were waiting for cash. CRS says it will honor the waiting list.
"No need to register again," CRS told Refugee.Info. "IRC has shared their registration information with us, and we will call you."
"Your place in the list will not change," CRS added.
3. The eligiblity rules for cash haven't changed
You can learn who is eligible for cash assistance on the Refugee.Info website's Cash Assistance page.
If you were rejected for cash before but have since become eligible, you can call the hotline and let them know, CRS told us.
"If the circumstances that led to your rejection did not change, you will not be able to access cash assistance. For example if you didn’t have valid documents, and you were rejected, and you still did not resolve the issue, you will be rejected again," CRS explained.
"If you in the meantime obtained valid documents, you should apply again," CRS said.
4. If you have changed your phone number, call the hotline
Whether you're waiting for cash assistance or you already have a card, CRS told us, it is extremely important to call the hotline if you change your phone number.
If you don't update your contact information, "you risk losing some of your cash payments," CRS said.
5. If you already have a cash card, expect a call from CRS
If you live in private accommodation in Attica, CRS says it will invite you to certification at an office in Athens. You'll get the address during that call, CRS said.
You should get your next top-up within a month, CRS added.
Cover photo: UNHCR/Yorgos Kyvernitis