Little Georgia is a series of photographs about the Georgian community in Athens.
During the ’90s, after the collapse of the so called former Eastern bloc, Greece became a destination country for immigrants, looking for work and a better future. The Georgian community is considered to be one of the largest migrant communities in Greece. The large trend of migration from Georgia to Greece is a predominantly female phenomenon; Georgian women come to Greece to work mainly as domestic workers (cleaning, childcare, taking care of the old or sick). They face a very difficult reality of social discrimination, xenophobia, financial exploitation and illegalization. Nevertheless, Georgian women develop empowerment strategies and mutual support practices in order to be able to keep on taking care of themselves and the ones they love.
Little Georgia is about a migrant woman’s world.
Several Georgian women –often even ten of them– can share an apartment, each one of them contributes to the expenses. That home is like no other. Usually, for six days it is totally empty and quiet, without someone living in. It gets alive only on Sundays, during their day offs. It is a weekly meeting point, a place of their own to stay and relax. It is a Sunday home.
Usually older women or very young women or women whose children live in Georgia, work inside the employer’s house. All the rest need to seek out a job that allows them to take care of their family too.
From time to time they organize a collective night out to Georgian restaurants. Especially on holidays. It is very important for them to all get together and to share their latest news, to update their network. Usually, there aren’t any men among them and the restaurants get crowded only by women who laugh, dance, drink.
Many Georgian mums spend their summers at Saint Paul’s yard, sitting on benches, chewing on sunflowers seeds. The summer is long. Some of them are so sick of Saint Paul’s yard. “Saint Paul again, all the time Saint Paul!” But what can they do since “the children love it there”.