“No one is entitled to commendation or praise when fulfilling one’s fundamental duty towards one’s homeland and fellow man.”
~86,000 individuals benefited directly from initiatives funded by the Foundation in the areas of:
Education & Science, Arts & Culture, Social Welfare & Community Development
6 collaborative initiatives were implemented with 20 Greek and foreign charitable foundations with the aim:
to enhance the protection and social inclusion of vulnerable social groups
to support young scientists, artists and athletes
to improve the services and upgrade the infrastructure of public health care providers in Greece
166 non-profit organisations and institutions received grants for their activities
10 job positions in Civil Society organisations were funded by the Foundation
34,242 individuals benefited from donations to healthcare services providers
3,367 individuals benefited from donations to healthcare services providers
22,745 students and 1,723 teachers participated in diverse educational activities
155 scholarships were awarded to young students at all levels of education
4,285 individuals benefited from initiatives supported by the Foundation in the area of Arts and Culture
19,808 individuals visited the Neraida Floating Museum among which 2,920 students that participated in the Museum’s educational programme
The Foundation seeks to improve quality of education, at all levels, through targeted activities, as well as to support access to education, first and foremost via the provision of scholarships. In the realm of Science, the primary goal is to support the research of young scholars in the fields of Humanities and Social Sciences.
The “Learning Together” programme is an initiative of the Latsis Foundation implemented since 2013. A primary goal is to support the creativity that develops during the learning and education process. Public calls are addressed annually to public preschools and primary schools of general and special education.
From 2013 to 2016, each cycle of the programme, by school year, had different geographic targeting. In the 1st cycle, the public call was addressed to schools of the Greek islands. The following school year, proposals were submitted for educational activities in schools of mainland but border regions of the country. The target group of the 3rd cycle of the programme included preschools and primary schools in Central and Western Greece as well as the Peloponnese and Crete. Schools from the Directorates of Primary Education of A’ Athens, Piraeus, East Attica and West Attica submitted their ideas for implementation in the 2016 – 2017 school year.
From 2017, the programme has gained Panhellenic reach and offers the opportunity for teachers from all regions of Greece to submit their proposals aiming to enrich the education process in their classroom.
Since the programme’s first implementation cycle, 113 educational activities have been carried out with the participation of 4,435 students and 331 teachers in public preschools and primary schools all over Greece.
January – June 2018
20 activities were carried out in schools from 18 different regions of the country. Two short films, an aquatic cultivation system, an album with ceiling murals of neoclassical houses of Ermoupolis and a model depicting the future colony on the planet Mars are just a few of the creations of the students who participated in the programme, led by their teachers.
The involvement of the students in the educational activities was particularly encouraging. The experiential nature of the activities provided an opportunity for children and teachers to interact in a highly creative way and has contributed to the strengthening of the participants’ self- esteem, achieving one of the primary goals of the programme.
September – December 2018
Another cycle of the programme started at the beginning of the school year, calling on teachers from all parts of Greece to submit their proposals.
The implementation of 20 activities was launched in December and, as in each cycle of the programme, will be completed at the end of the school year.
In the 2017 – 2018 school year, the following participated in the programme: 738 students and 53 teachers.
“Through the ‘Learning Together’ programme, 48 pupils of the 6th grade made an approach towards cinema art. They attended photography and directing workshops. Based on their interests, they took on different roles and created two short movies that were filmed with equipment obtained through the programme. Within the framework of the school cooperative ’Galerita’, an informal film club was established. Eight quality movies were screened in public events, were warmly received and created a cultural kernel.”
Stavroula Lagou, 5th Primary School of Korydallos Coordinator of educational activity titled “6th grade – 7th art … Galerita films!”
“Thanks to the Latsis Foundation funding, we managed to implement an innovative initiative aimed at promoting a bookwarm culture and showcasing literature as a means of intercultural dialogue, thereby enhancing our school’s multicultural dimension. The equipment obtained and especially the books have considerably enriched the teaching process and will continue to do so in the school years to come.”
Maria Karagianni, 35th Preschool of Athens Coordinator of educational activity titled “In books I mirror myself, learn about the world and think”.
The Latsis Foundation supports the Athens Open Schools Programme, an initiative of the Municipality of Athens which has been implemented since 2015 by the Athens Partnership with the founding donation of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation. A primary goal of the programme is to make use of school buildings outside school hours for the benefit of the local community. Athens Open Schools comprise a place of creation and innovation with culture, education, technology and sports activities for all age groups. These activities are based on innovation, are implemented free of charge and are carried out at school facilities during the evenings throughout the week as well as on weekends.
Activities offered in Athens Open Schools are proposed by civil society institutions or by individuals, are selected after evaluation and are realised by the implementing body with the support of the Municipality of Athens. Through the programme, the doors of school buildings are opened in an organised and secure manner, access to free knowledge and entertainment is provided to citizens of all ages and, as a result, their quality of life is enhanced.
In November 2018, the following activities were launched with funding from the Foundation:
Creative pastime for children with autism and pervasive developmental disorder. The activity, in which preschool and school-age children as well as adolescents participated, included sports, construction, painting, music and storytelling among other things.
Within the framework of the “Little builders” activity, children ages 6 to 12 have the opportunity to explore the worlds of sculpture, engraving and painting, to remodel old toys, to build musical instruments, and to understand the importance of recycling through stories and games.
Christmas gardening and manufacturing of Christmas decorations from recyclable materials. Through the robotics activities “Young engineers” and “Introduction to educational robotics with LEGO WeDo”, children ages 6 to 8 and 9 to 11 years, respectively, have the opportunity to experientially approach the laws of physics and mathematics and gain a first exposure to programming and the logic of automation.
Through the “Young people’s stage goes to school” programme, qualified theatre professionals meet with the students of the 2nd General Lyceum “Theodoros Aggelopoulos” on a weekly basis. Students’ contact with theatre techniques, the rehearsal process and the preparation of a performance is aimed at getting them to know and love the theatre.
Yoga lessons for adults. Through the offered activity, yoga classes are provided to participants with the aim of improving their physical condition.
Since November 2018, 5 partner organisations implemented 7 different activities in 12 schools, offering 248 hours of education/ technology, sports, entertainment and culture to 308 beneficiaries.
From the commencement of the programme’s implementation until today, 21 schools have opened their doors for the implementation of 521 activities, in which 31,350 people have participated.
The Foundation continues to support the work of Desmos, this time in the field of education, through the “I Care & Act“ programme. It is an innovative educational programme aimed at the young generation’s adoption of volunteering and community contribution as a way of life. The implementation of the “I Care & Act” educational programme in schools provides the stimulus and resources to students to become active and responsible citizens by cultivating the values of volunteering, solidarity and selfless giving.
“I Care & Act” is implemented throughout the spectrum of school education, from preschool to lyceum, in all types of schools all over the country. The programme includes educational material for students, teachers and, beginning from the current school year, also for families, and is available free of charge on the programme’s website. Experiential learning is a very important element of the programme’s methodology, as the combination of academic knowledge with experiential activities, the taking of initiative by students and the interaction of school and society are catalysts for understanding the value and joy of giving. In addition, cooperation with civil society organisations and local actors is also being sought, with the ultimate goal of mobilizing the families of students as well as the school and local communities.
481 schools and more than 38,500 students have participated in the programme from 2015 to 2018.
2,760 teachers and coordinators have been trained within the framework of the programme and have developed initiatives with more than 1,600 organisations and partners.
For the third consecutive year, the Municipal Theatre of Piraeus, with the support of the Foundation, has been carrying out the educational programme “The Third Bell or Theatre with a Difference”, aiming to actively support students’ engagement with creative extracurricular activities. The programme consciously integrates the fields of theatre and education into the classroom and into a professional theatrical stage. Theatrical teaching, under the guidance of young directors and people from the theatre, encourages students to develop their relationship with reading, writing and the ability to discuss and collaborate with each other.
In the 3rd cycle of the programme, a particular emphasis was placed on the theatrical text. Students of gymnasiums and lyceums of the greater Piraeus region, along with directors, collaborated to write a text which they then used to “construct” a theatrical performance. The children undertook rehearsals, made costumes and scenery and finally presented their school performance on the central stage of the Municipal Theatre of Piraeus.
The schools that participated in the programme and the performances presented in April 2018 were as follows:
2nd General Lyceum of Perama – “Repartee”, a work of the students;
Zanneio Experimental General Lyceum of Piraeus – “Antigone’s Matchmaking”, by Vasilis Ziogas;
3rd General Lyceum of Keratsini – “Area K 3434”, a work of the students;
3rd Gymnasium of Nikaia – “Girl with a Suitcase”, a work of the students based on the story of the theatrical work “Boy with a Suitcase” by Mike Kenny;
1st Gymnasium of Piraeus – “Everything I haven’t told you…”, a work of the students;
Ionidios Model Gymnasium of Piraeus – “What is This Thing Called Love?”, a work of the students. The title comes from Isaac Asimov’s science fiction short story.
109 students, 7 teachers and 6 directors took part in the programme during the 2017 – 2018 school year.
The Foundation supports the educational activities of the Museum of Cycladic Art (MCA) and, in particular, the children's drawing competition the Museum organises and implements for children ages 4 to 12, as well as the “Together at the Museum” programme, which began in September 2018.
The children’s drawing competition entitled “Imagine what is hidden in the lamp!”, which started in October 2018, is being held for the 6th consecutive year and invites preschoolers and all years of primary school to become the artists of the next Museum exhibition. The protagonist of the competition is a ceramic lamp, an object of the 1st century A.D., which is exhibited on the second floor of the Museum, within the exhibition “Ancient Greek Art – A Story with Pictures”. The winners of the competition, selected by a jury established by the Museum, will be awarded at a special event on the Museum’s premises.
The “Together at the Museum” programme was launched in 2016 and offers a series of free workshops for children and teenagers, from 5 to 17 years old with learning and developmental disabilities, encouraging them to communicate ans socialise with each other. Through the workshops that are being developed and implemented by the experienced staff of the Museum who specialise in education and art therapy, the participants come into contact with the collections of the Museum of Cycladic Art and also have the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the experience of visiting cultural institutions.
The following individual activities were implemented under the “Together at the Museum” programme:
September – December 2018
90 students from 6 special education schools participated in the educational workshops addressed to children with learning and/or developmental disabilities. Activities within the workshop include multisensory play, which operates as a platform for self-expression for the participants. In various of these workshops body movement is also explored as a means of creative collaboration.
80 children participated in the workshops implemented by the MCA in collaboration with the Children’s Hospital “P. & A. Kyriakou” and the non-profit organisation “Floga” for children with neoplasmatic diseases enrolled in primary school during their hospitalisation.
75 primary and secondary school teachers have participated in the experiential workshop entitled “Art for All”, which was first launched by the MCA in 2018. The workshop “Art for All” is addressed to teachers of special education schools and of departments of integration as well as to all teachers wishing to broaden their horizons on the subject of linking special education and art.
In 2018 the Foundation supported the Student Competition on Creativity – Critical Reasoning “Out of the Box Challenge”, which is organised by Charismatheia and is addressed to all students of primary schools and gymnasiums in Greece and abroad.
In April 2018, the first phase of the competition took place, during which the students were called upon to try their skills in responding to logical and imaginative problems. The 120 children thereby distinguished proceeded to the second phase, where they had the opportunity to take part in a festival of creation and construction in Athens. The children were tried in such skills as teamwork and communication. The 12 children that advanced to the last phase of the competition stayed in a camp area for 10 days, where they were given the opportunity to seek and find innovative and realistic solutions to real-life problems while cohabiting with other children. At this stage, students were called upon to use technology to go from idea to practice and produce an original product with a reciprocal benefit to society. The winning team dealt with the topic of collective intelligence describing a smart city focusing on concepts such as security, privacy and freedom.
Charismatheia was founded in 2015 and implements activities aimed at strengthening children’s skills, recognising and promoting talented children and implementing customized education in Greek schools. The action pillars of the organisation are interdisciplinarity, creativity and critical reasoning, and the ultimate goal is the children’s holistic development and future contribution to society.
More than 1,400 children, from 17 different regions in Greece, Cyprus and Belgium, took part in “Out of the Box Challenge”.
Subject matter from the competition has been used by more than 600 schools and 6,000 people.
In the summer of 2018, 37 secondary school teachers from all over Greece travelled to CERN, in Switzerland, and through funding of the Foundation, attended an intensive 4-day seminar. The seminar is part of the Greek Teacher Programme, implemented in 2018 for the 10th year and aiming to promote innovative methods of teaching Physics through high-level education and workshops at CERN facilities.
During the seminar, the teachers had the opportunity to attend lectures by Greek scientists of CERN concerning scientific issues such as, among others, developments in the areas of particle physics, detectors, energy conversion, electronics, information technology, and their medical applications. They also participated in workshops, through which they had the opportunity to understand best practices in conducting scientific experiments, so that, in addition to the educational value there would be excitement and stimulation of student interest. Many of the participants have already planned the implementation of activities for the current school year.
The most exciting lesson for the teachers was the construction of their own particle detector (Cloud Chamber) during the S’Cool Lab workshops. S’Cool Lab is an integral research and education facility that was used by teachers with the aim of implementing and testing their knowledge in an environment that was novel and innovative for them.
More than 600 secondary school teachers have benefited from their participation in CERN’s training programme.
192 applications were submitted by secondary school teachers to participate in the educational mission in the summer of 2018. 81% of participants stated that the particular experience contributed significantly to strengthening their self-confidence as teachers, and 84% stated it reinforced their motivation to impart the knowledge they acquired to their students.
Impressions of participants from the field of education
“This was an experience that benefited us all on multiple levels, beyond the simple learning objectives. [Here] someone can grasp the possibilities for further technological advancements. [CERN] represents a place where people from different countries and cultures harmoniously cooperate and it offers opportunities for personal development for both educators and their students.”
“When you leave this place you feel richer in knowledge and experiences. It’s a miracle how people managed to build so great things in such a little time!”
“I would definitely recommend this Programme to my colleagues as I believe that every teacher should know about the research work of the largest scientific research centre in the world!”
“It is a unique opportunity for direct interaction with the place and people who create new knowledge and technologies!”
The John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation continues to support young people who wish to advance their studies at the postgraduate level in any field of science at universities in Greece and abroad through the annual postgraduate scholarship programme that it has implemented from its establishment.
During the evaluation of applications, special emphasis is given to academic performance, educational development, the level of postgraduate curricula and the future aspirations of candidates, taking into account their social and economic situation.
The Foundation, in 2018, supported a total of 52 young people through scholarships for postgraduate studies for all scientific fields.
Postgraduate scholarship recipients study or have completed their studies in leading European universities, in countries such as the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, France, Germany, Sweden etc.
“The John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation scholarship is an excellent opportunity thanks to which I continue my studies at a postgraduate level abroad. By covering the majority of my expenses, it enables me to conserve resources for my next academic steps. It is also a significant distinction that is very much taken into account in the academic as well as in the professional area.” Aix-Marseille Universite, Aix-en-Provence, France
Clementine-Eleni Nikolaidi Lefrancois, Master 2 Droit Public: Pratique des Droits Fondamentaux
“With the Latsis Foundation support as an undergraduate scholarship recipient, I gained experience in labs in Spain and the United States, thanks to which I’m now pursuing postgraduate studies in Neuroscience at the University of Oxford. The Foundation continues to support me, as a postgraduate scholarship recipient now. I am truly grateful for all the support – without which I would have been on a considerably different path.”
Ioanna Mitrakou, MSc in Neuroscience, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom
“The Latsis Foundation support is critical for pursuing my postgraduate studies since it is thanks to it that I am able to entirely cover my living expenses in London. If I did not receive the Foundation scholarship, attending the postgraduate programme I have chosen would have been unachievable and I would have therefore followed a different path. To that end, I am truly grateful to the Foundation.”
Megi Zenelak, MSc in Culture and Society, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, United Kingdom
Within the framework of the Foundation’s broader strategy of providing targeted opportunities at all levels of education in Greece and abroad, in September 2018, its cooperation with the British Government to provide a Chevening Scholarship was announced. The scholarship offers full funding for a postgraduate programme in the fields of Social Policy, Public Administration, International Development and Political Science at a UK university for the academic year 2019/2020. Priority is given to applications for programmes related to Civil Society and Management of Non-Profit Organisations.
The Chevening Scholarships are funded by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office and partner organisations and are awarded to individuals with demonstrable leadership potential who also have a strong academic background. From the start of the Chevening programme in 1983 to today, more than 50,000 scholarships have been awarded.
From the start of the Chevening programme in 1983 to today, more than 50,000 scholarships have been awarded.
“I am delighted that Chevening once again offers an opportunity for the brightest and best Greek students to pursue postgraduate studies in this important field. Civil society has a crucial role to play in both our societies.”
British Ambassador to Greece, Ms Kate Smith CMG
The Foundation continues to support the research of Greek scientists, focusing on the humanities and social sciences, through its constant collaboration with the Research Centre for the Humanities (RCH). The Centre’s main purpose is the strengthening and funding of research in the humanities as well as the further dissemination and diffusion of the results to the scientific community and the general public through the organisation of conventions, conferences and meetings.
Each year, RCH announces a public call for postdoctoral researchers and research teams to submit proposals. Proposals are evaluated by specialist scientists in each field who work in universities and research centres in Greece or other countries. An important activity of RCH is the international communication and cooperation with equivalent centres and institutions, with the aim of exchanging scholars, co-organising research programmes and other scientific activities.
In 2018, the following research projects were realised with the Foundation’s funding:
Refugees from Greece and the Dodecanese to Turkey during WWII (1941–1944),
Island of the Pariahs: the History of the Leros Psychiatric Hospital (1957–1995), Danae Karydaki;
The “open” archaeological site as an alternative management model in urban environment: Akadimia Platonos and Philopappos Hill, research team of Despina Catapoti, Ioulia Skounaki and Georgia Gkoumopoulou;
The Necessity of the “Useful Lies” in Plato’s Republic, Eleni Kaklamanou;
Adamantios Korais – Towards an intellectual biography: His medical work, Constantin Irodotou.
During the year, conventions took place where postdoctoral researchers presented the results of their work with the participation of scientists, researchers and students of each field.
The Foundation supports the Saint Catherine’s Project, located within the Ligatus Research Centre at the University of the Arts London. The project is concerned with the preservation and conservation of the world’s oldest library which is located within the Monastery of Saint Catherine in Sinai, Egypt, itself the oldest active Christian monastery in the world. The Monastery's library holds a unique collection of manuscripts from the 4th to the early 19th century. Although the great majority are written in Greek, there are substantial collections in Arabic, Syriac, Georgian, and smaller numbers in seven other languages.
Ligatus has undertaken the task of assessing the condition of these manuscripts, together with an important collection of early printed books, classifying the information using modern digital techniques and offering advice on further conservation work. Professor Nicholas Pickwoad is the Saint Catherine’s Project leader, and his work in this field has been supported by the Foundation during 2018.
The annual Ligatus Summer School for advanced book conservation was held at the new National Library in Athens from 15-26 October 2018. Eight members of the Library’s staff attended Professor Pickwoad’s course in the first week of the School. The group visited the library of the Laskaridis Foundation in Piraeus and the Gennadius Library and was given access to the rare book stacks in order to select material for the School’s afternoon sessions. The course in the second week, which was attended by eight students, including members of the Library’s staff, was taught by Dr. Athanasios Velios and Dr. George Boudalis.
Professor Nicholas Pickwoad gave a public lecture in the National Library at the end of the first week of the Summer School entitled “Portraits with books: an examination of books in the paintings of Lorenzo Lotto and his contemporaries”, which was very well attended.
33 people from 9 countries participated in the condition survey of the 3,307 bound manuscripts in the old library of the Monastery of Saint Catherine in Sinai.
22 students participated in the Ligatus Summer School.
The Foundation supported, for the fourth consecutive year, the European Young Leaders programme, organised by the think-tank Friends of Europe. The programme, implemented since 2011, brings together 40 40-and-younger leaders who have already made their mark in a wide range of fields such as politics, science, business, media, NGOs, the arts and civil society. Within the framework of this year’s programme, the European Young Leaders came together in Warsaw and Malta, where they had the opportunity to engage in discussions related to the European elections of May 2019. They were also able to listen to the message of Marian Turski, a Holocaust survivor, on the importance of freedom and to exchange views concerning the protection of liberal values in a critical time
for Europe. The 40 European Young Leaders concluded that more direct democracy and ethical social media campaigns are needed, issues further discussed during a meeting of alumni of the programme organised in October 2018 in Brussels.
The European Young Leaders now comprises a network of more than 180 alumni from numerous European countries, including Greece.
Showcasing the Greek civilisation and supporting young artists and cultural managers are among the Foundation’s priorities and are realised through collaborations with organisations in Greece and abroad.
“START – Create Cultural Change” is a capacitybuilding and fellowship programme for aspiring cultural managers in Greece. Through the programme, young creative minds are supported so as to kick-start their cultural initiatives aimed at generating positive social impact in their local communities.
The START programme includes three phases in Germany and Greece, which enable programme scholars to implement innovative ideas in independent cultural initiatives and acquire professional skills.
The programme includes the following phases:
Phase I: Training programme in Germany for 30 selected fellows for a three-month period (September to November).
Phase II: Implementation of cultural initiatives and guidance programme for 15 selected fellows for a six-month period (from December to May).
Phase III: “Scaling Awards”, awarded for exemplary programme initiatives, for a one - year period (from June).
The Latsis Foundation, for the second consecutive year, conferred the 5 “Scaling Awards”. The individuals distinguished in 2018 were:
Elias Adam for the initiative “Smallville: The Rural Artivists”, founded on “informal social councils” and modern performing arts and implemented in small towns in the Peloponnese;
Olga Daskali for the initiative “Roots are Routes”, through which local workshops are being carried out, providing professional orientation stimuli to students and adults based on the features of the site and the landscape;
Sotiris Karagiotas for the initiative “2BD (2 Basic Directions)”, which includes training opportunities for young people and women with different ethnic backgrounds at the first sociocultural centre of Greece in Karditsa;
Alexander Michail for the initiative “To Whom It May Concern”, a forum of artistic expression and at the same time an informational campaign concerning the HIV virus;
Angeliki Mitropoulou for the initiative “KYMA Project”, a platform that creates opportunities for disabled people to engage in the fields of contemporary dance and performance.
The programme is implemented by the Robert Bosch Stiftung Foundation in cooperation with the Goethe-Institut Thessaloniki and the German Federal Association of Socio-cultural Centres (Bundesvereinigung Soziokultureller Zentren e.V.), and is supported by the John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation and the Bodossaki Foundation.
“The Scaling Grant awarded by the Latsis Foundation has enabled us to maximise our organisation’s social impact by multiplying the number of our activities and ensuring the KYMA Festival will take place in 2019. The Foundation’s support helps us keep our promise for equal access to all of our activities for everyone, with or without disability.”
Angeliki Mitropoulou, Founder / Project Manager, “Kyma Project”
“Participating in START programme puts you in the market. You cooperate, negotiate, fail and succeed at the same time; you witness the realisation of your plan. You dive in the deep and uncharted waters of cultural management, towards which steps are only now being taken. Yet through the expertise (legal, accounting, mentoring) provided, you manage to build your capacity, realise how theory is put into practice and contribute to making the change.”
Olga Daskali, Manager, Diadromi Non-profit organisation, Project “Roots are Routes”
“The Foundation’s support has helped us kickstart vatira, a non-profit organisation with the imperative ‘art for a society free of discrimination’, through which we continue to develop ’To Whom It May Concern’, an initiative that in collaboration with civil society organisations brings HIV to the public sphere not as a threat, as it is usually portrayed, but as what it actually is: a fully manageable human experience.”
Alexandros Michail, Co-founder, vatiras, Project “To Whom It May Concern”
Following upon the funding for the creation of the Greek Youth Symphony Orchestra (GYSO), the John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation remains a supporter of the Orchestra, supporting its operations in the 2018 – 2019 artistic period. The Greek Youth Symphony Orchestra, which was founded by conductor Dionysis Grammenos, is composed of young musicians from all over Greece as well as Greek musicians living abroad. It is mainly aimed at the identification, guidance, education and promotion of talented young musicians in the symphonic and operatic repertoire under the guidance of internationally renowned soloists and principals of Greek as well as major European orchestras. The participation in the orchestra is free of charge and travel and accommodation expenses of the musicians are covered.
A key element of GYSO’s operations comprises educational programmes aimed at young audiences, such as the open general rehearsal of the Orchestra, which students of all ages may attend at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center.
In 2018, the 45 young musicians of the Orchestra participated in 5 concerts in Athens and Thessaloniki.Challedu
“I think that the power of GYSO is the participants’ passion and energy. It is beautiful to see, in your colleagues’ eyes, the thirst for playing music. This has been a pivotal motivation for me to participate in the orchestra, together of course with my appreciation for the conductor Dionysis Grammenos, who is extremely talented and has what it takes to lead the orchestra to very high levels.”
Nikolaos Prevezianos, Violoncello (26 years old), Greek National Opera Leading Cellist
“I learned about GYSO for the first time last year, through a video shared on Facebook by various members of the orchestra. It caught my attention from the very beginning. It was something very different from what I have seen and heard in youth orchestras in Greece. GYSO’s effort to create a youth orchestra of European standards at a very difficult time seems to be an immense undertaking that I already see bearing fruit. And this is admirable, as well as moving.”
Anastasia-Artemis Dimopoulou, Violin (23 years old), Department of Music Science & Art, University of Macedonia
“GYSO is a new effort for our country and I am truly happy to be given the opportunity to be a part of it! From the very first concerts of the orchestra’s first period, I have been amazed by the level of the musicians’ competence, their professionalism and the atmosphere in general. It truly is an orchestra to stand proudly among its peers abroad. I am very excited to see what the new season brings!”
Andreas Anthopoulos, Bassoon (22 years old), University of the Arts Bremen, Germany
The “Youth Opera” programme is an initiative of the Greek National Opera (GNO) with the primary goal of offering young artists who are starting their career the experience of an artistic period in real working conditions under the guidance and supervision of experienced artists and teachers. The John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation continues to support the programme, thus enhancing the process by which young artists acquire the resources and tools that will render them truly qualified professionals according to contemporary requirements in the field of opera.
Artists have the opportunity to attend acting lessons, seminars on the improvement of vocal technique and role preparation by visiting professors and conductors. The first artistic period of the programme was completed with the presentation of the two one-act operas by Giacomo Puccini “Sister Angelica” and “The Cloak” at the Greek National Opera's Stavros Niarchos Hall.
These two operas were first presented at the New York Metropolitan Opera in 1918, while in the Greek National Opera they were presented for the first time in 1970, and they deal with issues such as loss, crime and death, difficult subjects that the artists have been called upon to face with sensitivity.
The production of the above works was the culmination of the programme. The presentation, in a large hall and a stage with a full operatic orchestra, in real conditions and production times, gave the artists the opportunity to grasp the standards they will need to set and adhere to on their professional path.
“A young artist needs (apart from talent) to be goal-oriented, fellow travelers and an environment of trust in which they can flourish…
Experiences like the one I had with the Youth Opera have shaped me artistically and spiritually. Through the programme, I explored my personal boundaries at various levels. The faith and persistence of the programme’s coordinators have helped me reach my full potential and the on-stage interaction with my colleagues has filled my “music pockets” with experience and knowledge that would have been impossible to obtain solely by individual study. Finally, our encounter with real-life working conditions (using the Stavros Niarchos Hall and the Alternative Stage of the Greek National Opera, collaborating with the Greek National Opera orchestra and the Greek Youth Symphony Orchestra led by Dionysis Grammenos, etc.) proved the feasibility of our dreams.
Opera, as an art form which is universal and timeless, requires its “Youth” in order to evolve. In the Greece of today, maybe more than ever.”
Marietta Sarris, first programme cycle participant
The “Little Musicians” programme was designed in 2013 by the Athens Conservatory in collaboration with the Latsis Foundation, which fully funded its first 3 years of operation. The Foundation continues to support the programme, the aim of which is to enhance music education in Greece by granting scholarships for musical studies to children whose families are unable to cover the cost of tuition.
The “Little Musicians” programme is aimed at children ages 6 to 13 and takes into account, among other things, the inclination of candidates towards music and their financial status in order to select participants and thus grant scholarships. The little scholars are selected after auditions by experienced music educators in the Athens Conservatory. The training includes lessons of theory and musical instruments as well as participation in musical ensembles and the Little Musicians choir.
The “Little Musicians” are progressing, standing out for their high level of musical studies, continuing to distinguish themselves in domestic and international competitions and participating in noteworthy professional music events. Indicatively, during 2018, the Little Musicians choir took part in concerts at venues such as the Presidential Palace and the Megaron Athens Concert Hall.
During the 2017 – 2018 school year, 28 students participated in the programme.
Distribution of scholars: 11 children on piano, 5 children on violin, 1 child on violoncello, 5 children on flute, 1 child on clarinet, 3 children on guitar, 1 child on trombone and 1 child on percussion.
In March 2018, the Benaki Museum inaugurated an exhibition dedicated to the important Swiss photographer Fred Boissonnas; the exhibition ran for two months and was set up with the support of the John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation.
The Swiss photographer Frédéric (Fred) Boissonnas (1858-1946) was invited to Egypt in 1929 by King Fuad I to gather photographic material for the lavish publication entitled Égypte [Egypt] (Geneva, 1932). With his compatriot publisher and author Paul Trembley as a companion, he travelled the country for eleven months, creating images that referenced both the long history of the country and the identity of the newly-established Egyptian state.
In May 1933, Fred Boissonnas returned to Egypt for his last, as it turned out, photographic campaign. He visited the Sinai Peninsula and the Monastery of Saint Catherine for the second time, following the route of the Israelites as recorded in the biblical “Exodus”. The images from this trip as well as the extensive handwritten notes he kept would provide the material for a new publication, similar to Égypte, which was given the provisional title of Au Sinaï [In Sinai]. Despite Boissonnas’s efforts, the book was never published.
The exhibition “Fred Boissonnas in Egypt” focused on his photographic work for these two books, visually exploring, on the one hand, the complex narratives of the newly-founded Egyptian state (after the unilateral declaration of independence from Britain) and, on the other hand, the photographer’s own search for inspiration in the Sinai desert. The exhibition was curated by Prof. Oriana Baddeley, Professor of Art History and Dean of Research, University of the Arts London, Ms. Ewelina Warner, Research Assistant and Research Administrator, Ligatus Research Unit, University of the Arts London and
Dr. George Manginis, Academic Director of the Benaki Museum.
4,021 people visited the exhibition.
170 participants took part in 6 guided tours.
“The ‘Fred Boissonnas in Egypt’ exhibition was planned and mounted in record time as a result of enthusiastic teamwork between the organisers, the curators and the funder. The captivating images by the Swiss artist photographer as well as the allure of Egypt at a pivotal moment in its history, when it tried to balance between tradition and modernity, shone through thanks to the concise texts, the bold design (featuring panoramic prints of Sinai desert images) and a video that escorted visitors around Saint Catherine’s Monastery through Boissonnas’s own words.”
Dr. George Manginis
Academic Director, Benaki Museum
The Foundation supported the organisation of the temporary exhibition of the National Archaeological Museum “The countless aspects of Beauty in ancient art”, which constitutes the third part of the exhibition trilogy designed to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the National Archaeological Museum from the foundation of the emblematic building that houses it.
The trilogy opened in 2015 with the exhibition “A dream among splendid ruins ... Strolling through the Athens of travellers, 17th–19th century”, where, among other things, the cultural environment in which the need for the establishment of the National Museum arose, and continued with “Odysseys”, an exhibition that depicted abstractly and symbolically the long-standing endeavours of man for creation and evolution. The narrative of the third consecutive exhibition, which ran from May 26 to December 31, 2018, is formulated in four parts and showcases the different expressions of aesthetics in heterogeneous social and cultural environments from the Neolithic to Late Antiquity, capitalising on the wide chronological range covered by the collections of the National Archaeological Museum.
Many experimental workshops ran alongside the exhibition. Scientists, artists and craftsmen from Greece and abroad offered their special knowledge to explain to visitors their experimental approaches to Neolithic textiles, clothing in the Aegean in the second millennium B.C., Mycenaean apparel, polychromy of ancient sculptures and the rendition of Beauty in ancient Greek music.
340 antiquities from the rich collections of the National Archaeological Museum in combination with modern digital media were presented within the framework of the exhibition.
380,941 people visited the exhibition during the period June – December 2018.
The Latsis Foundation, for yet another year, supported the excavation and restoration work at the sanctuary of Apollo at the site of Mantra of Despotiko, which took place during the summer months of 2018. One of the most important archaic sanctuaries in the Cyclades, dedicated to Apollo (6th century B.C.), has been discovered at the site.
The results of the excavations were particularly significant, as two new buildings of the 6th century B.C. were discovered, the investigations of the buildings identified in 2017 continued and a number of findings came to light: an archaic kouros head, red-figure and black-figure kraters, inscribed shell vessels with the name of the god Apollo, bronze utensils and much more. 20 buildings are now known to exist at the sanctuary of Apollo, the size of which in the 6th century B.C. must have surpassed that of the sanctuary of Apollo at Delos.
Restoration and preservation work also made significant progress during the year. After the emplacement of the third column of the temple and the architrave above it, the monument has regained its third dimension and visitors can observe its size and grandeur even from the opposite coast of Antiparos.
All members of the scientific team and more than 60 student volunteers from universities in Greece (Athens, Ioannina and Crete) and abroad (Brazil, Argentina, England, Norway and Spain) participated in the excavation and recording of the material.
As a member of the Diazoma Association and continuing supporter of its work for the promotion and protection of monuments, the Foundation contributed to the implementation of the Programme of the Cultural – Environmental Route in Central Greece: “The Paths of History – Routes of Nature and Culture”. The Programme is carried out by the Region of Central Greece in collaboration with the Diazoma Association and its primary goal is the formation of a singular and comprehensive product of cultural tourism through which the sights of the Region will be promoted.
The monuments and sights of the Region of Central Greece, with the exception of the archaeological site of Delphi, remain unknown to the majority of the people visiting our country. Another key purpose of the Route is to attract potential tourists and visitors and especially tourists of special interest to benefit the accommodation, food and leisure businesses established in the area as well as the producers of agri-food products, crafts and other industries and the producers of modern cultural products.
The following main nodes identifying the Cultural and Environmental Route of Central Greece were selected:
1. Chalkida – Eretria (Evia),
2. Delphi (Parnassos),
3. Karpenissi (Evrytania),
4. Thermopylae (Kamena Vourla – Lamia – Lamia Castle),
In the Region of Central Greece, 1,051 declared archaeological sites and monuments have been recorded, of which 2, the archaeological site of Delphi and the Monastery of Hosios Loukas, are listed in the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Altogether in Central Greece, 19 museums and collections of the Ministry of Culture and more than 21 museums of other institutions are in operation.
Athens was named the 18th World Book Capital for 2018, following the original proposal submitted to UNESCO by the Municipality of Athens in collaboration with members of the book and culture industry. The Foundation supported the initiative “From April 23rd 2018 until April 22nd 2019 the city reads. Books Everywhere! Stories to Live!”. A plethora of organisations, embassies, programmes of the Municipality of Athens, publishing houses, creative teams and individuals collaborated in developing the programme of events.
The aim of the programme with the main slogan “The city reads – Books everywhere!” is to spread the delight of reading, to encourage creative expression and to spotlight the significance of stories and narratives for our life in modern-day metropolises like Athens.
Book-related activities and events, such as the Moving Library and the Athenian Book Itineraries cover all age groups and “activate” different parts of the city of Athens. Within the framework of the programme, exhibitions, talks, screenings and workshops that emphasise the association between the book and art (visual art, photography, theatre, music, cinema, comics, street art, etc.) are organised. Furthermore, educational activities and games related to books and reading are being implemented for children and families.
Throughout the project, world-accredited writers address the public and engage in discussions with Greek journalists, writers and poets through a series of talks, events and festivals.
By the end of November 2018, more than 400 events had taken place.
The number of visitors or participants in numerous AWBC events, including the 47th Zappeio Book Fair, is over 300,000.
In 2018, the Neraida Floating Museum continued offering the educational interactive programme “Travelling with the Neraida. A Game on Board”, in collaboration with schools of primary education.
The programme, specially designed for third to sixth grades of primary school, takes place for free in the museum’s premises and aims to acquaint children with the shipping history and tradition of the country. Qualified museum pedagogues carry out a series of group games and experiential activities and encourage the children through the games and discovery to explore the historic ship as well as to learn about aspects of Greek coastal and oceangoing shipping of the 20th century and investigate individual themes such as travel and the sea, boats and navigation, communication and transportation, people and memories.
In the first six months of 2018, the educational programme was implemented in cooperation with the primary schools of the A’ Athens Directorate of Primary Education (the municipalities of Athens, Vironas, Galatsi, Dafni-Ymittos, Zografou, Ilioupoli, Kaisariani, N. Philadelphia and N. Chalkidona) and the Piraeus Directorate of Primary Education (the municipalities of Aegina, Agios Ioannis Renti, Galata, Keratsini, Korydallos, Kythira, Nikaia, Piraeus, Perama, Poros, Salamina, Spetses and Hydra), while with the commencement of the 2018 – 2019 school year, the programme has thereafter been addressed to schools from all parts of the country.
2,668 children participated in the educational programme during 2018.
Class visits from 50 schools of Attica were organised.
“Beyond its educational and psychopedagogical value, it is important that it is a free, high quality programme. It combines the concept of ships / travel / adventure with the concept of business / development / life history.”
4th grade, 94th Primary School of Athens
“It was a very creative programme, as it contained games, painting activities, guided tours and provided material for the children to take with them”.
4th grade, 1st Primary of Nikaia
The Neraida Floating Museum, taking part in the tradition of celebratory events “Sea Days” organised by the Municipality of Piraeus, was moored at Zea Marina from Friday 1/6 until Sunday 10/6 2018 to welcome its visitors. This tradition, focusing on the sea and culture, aims to showcase the importance of the sea for the development of the city of Piraeus and, through various themed activities and events, attempts to highlight different parts of the city and honour its people.
1,506 visitors were welcomed aboard the Neraida Floating Museum at Zea Marina.
Educational programmes were organised for 10 classes from 4 schools of Piraeus.