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The Jaharis Family Foundation, Inc. announced a $2 million Challenge Gift to the Archdiocese for Greek Poverty and Hunger Relief Programs

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Jun 3, 2013

NEW YORK – The Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America is announcing with great appreciation and deep gratitude a $2 million gift of the Jaharis Family Foundation, Inc., which will specifically target hunger and poverty relief efforts and help needy children and families in Greece.

According to a Press Release of the Jaharis Family Foundation, Inc., “The Gift announcement was made to the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America in honor of His Beatitude Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens and All Greece, and His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios of America for their collaboration of efforts on providing humanitarian assistance to the people in Greece.”

His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios of America expressing his feelings about this gift, stated: “This very significant gift by the Jaharis Family, comes to assist in alleviating hardships which school children face daily in Greece due to the economic crisis. It is a magnificent gesture of love, which shows sensitivity, compassion and understanding.”

The Jaharis Family Foundation Press Release further states:

The Gift will be primarily directed to the IOCC (International Orthodox Christian Charities) to help develop, sustain and support its Hunger Relief efforts and partnership with Apostoli, the humanitarian affiliate organization of the Archdiocese of Athens.  As there is an alarming and growing need for hunger relief programs, specifically for children, this grant will help the IOCC dramatically expand its humanitarian aid programs and partnership with Apostoli such as providing food and meals to children and families in need while also supporting local agricultural industry and creating jobs through the distribution of fresh produce, dairy products, and bulk nutrients such as grains.

Constantine M. Triantafillou, Executive Director of the IOCC said,  “We are grateful for the Jaharis Family Foundation’s generosity which will greatly assist us in capacity building and further developing our programs and partnerships with Apostoli to offer assistance to children who are experiencing the devastating effects of poverty and hunger.  This lead Gift will help offer immediate relief to hunger and also help support programs that will create jobs and expand sustainable local agricultural initiatives.  We will be able to greatly increase our efforts in offering assistance with dignity and respect.”

On behalf of the Jaharis Family Foundation, Inc., Michael Jaharis stated, “Mary Jaharis experienced the devastating childhood hunger and poverty that existed in Greece during and immediately after World War II, and we, along with our family, feel compelled to support organizations promoting the welfare of children in Greece during the current crisis.   We are honored and humbled to support the IOCC’s great work responding to international humanitarian crisis and, specifically, their response to the crisis in Greece.  We hope that this gift will inspire other members throughout the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America and the Hellenic American community to collectively respond by donating funds that will match this Gift and therefore further positively impact children as well as other vulnerable populations such as the elderly in Greece.  If each family and/or organization throughout the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America would consider offering a matching donation at whatever level is feasible and possible, we could, as a community, double the impact of this gift – bringing it up to $4 million or more of humanitarian aid to the people of Greece. ”

In addition, the Gift will also offer support for the efforts in Greece of two other international non-governmental organizations: Doctors of the World and SOS Children’s Villages.  Through an already established collaboration with Doctors of the World in Greece, the Jaharis Family Foundation Gift will assist in expanding vaccination programs for children and the elderly as well as establish more polyclinics to provide primary and urgent care to vulnerable populations such as children, expectant mothers (pre/post-natal care), and the elderly among others.  Similarly, another portion of the Challenge Gift will support the SOS Children’s Villages programs that are geared to providing loving homes, education and health services, as well as psychological support for orphaned and abandoned children.  SOS Children’s Villages has also established social and youth centers, as well as outreach programs (family strengthening programs), which provide parent-training, job skills training, psychological/family counseling, and micro-loans to families at risk of abandoning their children.

To learn more about donating matching funds to further assist Greece, visit:

www.iocc.org, http://www.doctorsoftheworld.org, and http://www.sos-childrensvillages.org/Where-we-help/Europe/Greece/Pages/default.aspx

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