The Municipality of Thessaloniki, with the financial support of the John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation, has put into place a new social structure to provide free daily meals to socially vulnerable groups that are unable to meet their basic living needs.
The free meals programme, which is being implemented under the supervision of Kalypso Goula, Deputy Mayor for Social Solidarity and Citizen Protection, started on 13 November 2012; every month, 4,000 free meals will be offered to a total of 200 residents of the 4th and 5th Municipal Communities, while an additional 100 meals will soon be provided in other Municipal Communities of the Municipality of Thessaloniki as well. The beneficiaries were selected, based on the following criteria: unemployment, family income, whether a family has many children and the existence of serious health problems.
The John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation will fully cover the cost for the procurement of the raw materials needed to prepare 300 meals, on a daily basis, at existing facilities of the Municipality of Thessaloniki; the meals will then be delivered for the beneficiaries to locations that will be designated by the Municipal Communities and the Open Protection Centres of the Elderly (KAPI).
“Due to the financial difficulties faced by everyone, it is necessary that we –the Municipality of Thessaloniki– develop social policy actions in order to create a social safety net for those who are the most vulnerable and, unfortunately, the number of vulnerable persons continuously increases. The John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation responded to the request of the Municipality of Thessaloniki to support our actions for the poor, by covering the cost for the provision of free meals to an additional 300 fellow citizens who are in great need. We would like to thank the John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation for its support, which is an example of sensitivity to social issues and marks the start of a cooperation that we hope will continue in the future as well,”
said Giannis Boutaris, Mayor.
Kalypso Goula, Deputy Mayor for Social Solidarity and Citizen Protection, added that:
“By making this donation, the John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation helps the social solidarity actions developed by the Municipality of Thessaloniki in the current, difficult financial situation, which unfortunately affects an increasing number of people. This cooperation –which we hope will continue and be reinforced– enables us to help families for as long as necessary.”
On behalf of the John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation, Mr Dimitris Afendoulis, Secretary of the Executive Board, said that:
“When a country is facing a difficult situation, supporting programmes of cooperation between the State and public benefit foundations and organisations is an act of social responsibility and significantly contributes to the effort to help our fellow citizens who are suffering. Our cooperation with the Municipality of Thessaloniki comes as an addition to the food aid actions funded by the Latsis Foundation in the framework of the ‘It Is Our Duty’ social solidarity programme, in which to date more than 3,500 people are participating in a total of 24 Municipalities of the Prefectures of Attica and Thessaloniki, with a focus on regions where it is proven that the need to provide support is greater.”