“We continue to guarantee the safety and quality of life of people with disabilities”

Ioannis Guarantees the protection of people with disabilities in Greece Greece, Athens

The National Confederation of Disabled People (NCDP) has represented people with disabilities and chronic diseases since 1989. They continue to keep member organisations updated on government measures for people with disabilities, and it would have taken much more than COVID-19 to prevent them from doing their job. “We remained fully operational following the Ministry of Health’s ‘We stay at home’ campaign. Our staff began working from home and responding to telephone enquiries every day,” says Ioannis. With his colleagues, Ioannis made concrete proposals to the Prime Minister, relevant ministers, members of Parliament, and even regional and local authorities, taking into account the new challenges faced by people with disabilities. To this day, their goals remain unchanged: protecting the rights of persons with disabilities, chronic diseases and their families, guaranteeing their safety and quality of life.

“We must protect ourselves, otherwise, we are just here waiting to die”

Asylum seekers Asylum seekers at Moria refugee camp, amidst the COVID-19 pandemic Greece, Moria, Lesbos

The Refugee Camp of Moria in Greece has made a rather unfortunate name for itself over the past few months and the camp has only seen the situation of the people who inhabit it deteriorate with the outbreak of COVID-19. Conscious of the risks they are facing, a group of refugees has organised themselves to prevent the virus from spreading. “We started making masks, building temporary water stations for hand washing and collecting waste. We work with refugee and local communities to raise awareness on protection measures. We make sure to look after vulnerable refugees until they are evacuated from Moria. An outbreak inside the camp would be a disaster”, they explain. Although immigration policy remains in the hands of Member States, the European Parliament has often highlighted the situation of refugees on the Greek Islands. In April, it called for more support, accommodation facilities, and medical equipment for the refugee camps.

“We are now working with additional food producers, whom we will partner with to distribute more meals, so we can support more people in need”

Anna Donates surplus food to social welfare organisations Greece, Athens

As it has been necessary to close the hospitality sector to protect public health, some countries have seen an increase in food surpluses. Certain charities have also suspended their operations, for example soup kitchens offering cooked meals, in order to avoid mass gatherings of people. Anna, who works for the Greek non-profit organization Boroume, has been helping to reduce food waste in Greece during the pandemic. Through the organisation's "Saving & Offering Food" programme, which connects food businesses with charitable organisations, more than 24 000 meals are distributed each day in Greece to people facing food insecurity. Municipalities – through their social care units – have also been entrusted to provide additional support to vulnerable groups (e.g. aid at home to persons in self-isolation). Therefore, Boroume has been directing much of the above mentioned quantities of donated food to municipal social pantries.

“Today we continue our legacy with a simple, but impactful, act to help the country in this moment of great need”

Elisabeth Supplies alcohol to designated national COVID-19 treatment centres Greece, Athens

Before the pandemic hit, Elisabeth's company was creating alcoholic drinks using wine from the Aegean islands. In order to boost Greek spirits during the COVID-19 pandemic, it has redirected its resources to cover the needs of 13 designated hospitals treating affected patients. The first shipment of alcohol already arrived at Greece’s biggest hospital, the Evaggelismos in Athens, and more will arrive at hospitals all across Greece over the next three months.