THI Australia gives helping hand to remote Greek islands

October 2, 2018

Published in Neos Kosmos

A grant of $50,000 was given in support of an Axion Hellas project, providing medical assistance to residents of Volissos (Chios) and Psara

The Hellenic Initiative (THI) Australia teamed up with Axion Hellas to support the provision of medical assistance to residents of remote Greek islands, during a visit of volunteer doctors and nurses to Psara and the village Volissos in Chios last month.

A total of $50,000 was donated by THI Australia to the program run by Axion Hellas, aiming to provide preventive and specialised medical care for patients living far from big urban centres.

“The Hellenic Initiative Australia is proud to support the work of Axion Hellas in providing medical care to isolated and disadvantaged communities. Residents of these remote areas, the majority of them elderly, face challenges accessing basic health care and specialist medical support,” said the president of THI Australia, Nicholas Pappas.

During their five-day visit to the islands, the medical team set up temporary clinics where patients could be attended to by specialist doctors, nurses, and other health professionals including a nutritionist, a physiotherapist, an optometrist, as well as dentists for check-ups.

It is estimated that over 600 people benefited from expert medical attention.

Joining the medical team in their mission was also the Greek Community of Melbourne’s president Bill Papastergiadis.

“It was impressive to see how professional the set up for care for the villagers was. Even more impressive was the high-tech medical equipment which was brought along by the medical teams. They treated people on the spot with many complex issues being examined,” Mr Papastergiadis said, offering praise for the hard work and professionalism he witnessed first-hand.

“As Australians we are proud to be part of this program,” he added.

Overlooking the whole operation was Axion Hellas’ president Vasilis Pateras, who thanked THI for their support, as well as other charities that contributed to the project.

This is the second visit made since last year by the Axion Hellas medical team to Psara and Volissos (Chios), where patients often need to be transferred to the closest urban centre, Athens for specialised care.

Established as a non-profit, with the mission of improving and promoting all aspects of life for vulnerable groups living in remote areas on Greek islands and the mainland, Axion Hellas organises regular volunteer visits to those communities providing medical assistance, improving local infrastructure and running cultural projects targeting all age groups.