THI Australia Funds Boroume Farmers Market Program

June 28, 2017

The Hellenic Initiative Australia has provided an A$36,000 grant to fund the Boroume at the Farmer’s Market Program, a dynamic community initiative that saves surplus food from farmers’ markets in Athens for distribution to local charities.

The grant was announced in Athens on 27 June 2017, where four volunteers from Melbourne joined the Boroume team collecting produce from the Halandri Farmers’ market.

Since the Farmers’ Market Program began with one market in October 2015, Boroume has saved and offered more than 50 tonnes of fresh produce.

Boroume currently coordinates the collection of surplus fresh produce from 10 weekly farmers’ markets in Athens and Attica, with the support of volunteers, partner companies and local recipient charities. More markets will be joining the program in 2017, with plans to expand outside Athens, increase the number of volunteers and double the amount of produce collected.

The grant from THI Australia, which will fund the Boroume at the Farmer’s Market program for 12 months, builds on The Hellenic Initiative’s partnership with Boroume for the past two years and recent collaboration on the THI Australian Volunteering Program.

“The Hellenic Initiative Australia is proud to be supporting Boroume’s Farmer’s Market program because of the impact it is making, not just in saving food and helping people, but in encouraging volunteerism and building solidarity with the people of Greece,” said THI Australia President Nicholas Pappas.

“The Farmers’ Market program is one of the key programs being supported by our Volunteering Program, which gives Australians a way to contribute to crisis relief efforts during their holidays in Greece.”

More than 30 Australians will be volunteering with Boroume this year under the THI Australian Volunteering Program launched in February 2017. Four people from Sydney and four from Perth have already participated in collections in Athens.

The Farmers Market Program funding follows an A$40,000 grant from THI Australia in 2015-16 to support Boroume’s Food Saving Program, which doubled the amount of food saved and offered in 2016 and improved its efficiency – saving and offering 40 meals for every €1 in operational costs.

“We are very grateful to The Hellenic Initiative Australia for giving us the means to continue our dynamic expansion of the Boroume at the Farmer’s Market, program through which we have saved and donated more than 50 tonnes of fresh produce in just 1.5 years,” said Boroume Co-Founder Alexandros Theodoridis.

“This is one of our most important programs as it directly saves food from local farmers markets, which are held every week in every neighborhood in Greece. It’s a win-win-win-win program because the traders are happy to not waste food and donate it to people in need, the charities are happy to receive fresh produce, the volunteers are happy to participate in such a rewarding program and it has a positive impact on the environment by reducing food waste.

“We also are very pleased to have so many volunteers from the diaspora supporting Boroume this year through our partnership with THI Australia,” Mr Theodoridis said.

THI Australia was formed in 2015 to build on The Hellenic Initiative’s groundbreaking work supporting recovery and renewal in Greece and become a dynamic part of the global THI movement, aimed at harnessing the strength and resources of the Greek diaspora for the benefit of Greece and its people.

The Argyropoulos family from Melbourne with THI Australia Board Member Peter Abraam and the Boroume team at the Halandri farmers market.


Since it was founded in 2012, Boroume (“We Can”) has been a game changer in Greece, reducing food waste and offering more than 15 million portions of food to more than 500 charities throughout the country.

From home-cooked meals to produce from supermarkets, companies and restaurants, Boroume’s innovative programs save surplus food at every stage of the food chain. More than 20,000 portions of food are donated through Boroume’s network on average every day.

Boroume’s programs provide much-needed nutritional support to the most vulnerable in Greek society, help the environment by reducing organic food waste, raise awareness of food waste and promote volunteering and solidarity.

In June 2017, Boroume was named one of the 50 recipients of the 2017 European Citizen Awards.