SOS MEDITERRANEE receives 2016 “Schwarzkopf Europe Award” for its rescue mission in the Mediterranean

Berlin, 14. November 2016


Tonight SOS MEDITERRANEE will be awarded the 2016 “Schwarzkopf Europe Award”. Each year the Schwarzkopf Foundation honours institutions or public figures who have distinguished themselves in an outstanding way by a committed and dedicated service to either European understanding or the growing together of Europe.

SOS MEDITERRANEE will receive the award alongside other initiatives responding to the so-called refugee crisis, such as InterEuropean Human Aid Association Germany and Initiative Flüchtlinge Willkommen.

Captain Klaus Vogel, founder of SOS MEDITERRANEE will accept the award on behalf of the organization at the Permanent Representation of the EU in Berlin tonight. Only a few weeks ago, SOS MEDITERRANEE was awarded the European Citizen Prize by the European Parliament.

The organization was founded was founded in 2015 by a group of European citizens to save lives of persons in distress in the Mediterranean, given the lack of a comprehensive policy response at the EU level. “Since the start of our rescue operation in February 2016, we saved the lives of more than 5.000 refugees alongside our medical partner Doctors Without Borders (MSF)”, explains Klaus Vogel. “We understand our mission at sea as a humanitarian obligation. We stand with the active European civil society, promoting the values of a human and solidary Europe. Therefore we demand legal ways to enter Europe for those in need. We cannot allow that people who flee from war, torture and poverty and who seek a better life, die in the Mediterranean.”

Last weekend the rescue vessel run by SOS MEDITERRANEE in partnership with Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has saved 280 refugees from drowning and assisted three other organizations with evacuating more than 700 people from a wooden boat.

For more information, contact Jana Ciernioch, communication officer at SOS MEDITERRANEE Germany: