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Points of View

Greece

NATIONAL OFFICE

Person to contact:

Evi Hatzivarnava Kazasi
tel: 0030 210 6516182
e-mail: ehatzivarnavakazassi@yahoo.gr

Chryssoula Kirkitsou
tel: 0030 2130 233612
e-mail: kirkitsou@hol.gr

24, Ethnarchou Makariou str
174 55 Alimos
Athens-Greece
tel: 0030 2130 233612
mobile: 0030 6944691355
e-mail: hellas@homestart.org.gr
www.homestart.org.gr

BRIEF HISTORY OF THE HOME-START

Hom-Start Hellas

The first discussions about the implementation of Home-Start in Greece started in early 2000’s through a personal connection of the then Director of Home-Start International, Tanya Barron and Evi Hatzivarnava, then director at the Institute of Social Protection and Solidarity (ISPS) of Greece. The Institute was active in the initial stage of the development of Home-Start schemes in the country. In April 2008 Home-Start Hellas was set up as an independent non-governmental organisation in order to act as the National Coordinator of Home-Start schemes.

Spyros, the Chair of HS Athens and Kalli, the co-ordinator of Home-Start PireusSpyros, the Chair of HS Athens and Kalli, the co-ordinator of Home-Start Pireus
The first Home-Start scheme was implemented as a pilot scheme in Thessaloniki in 2004 and lasted two years. In 2006, a new scheme started its operation at Nea Ionia in the city of Volos and then in 2011 another scheme was set up Athens while a new scheme in Pireus was set up in late 2014.

Volunteer training in AthensVolunteer training in Athens

DESCRIPTION OF OUR ACTIVITIES

None of the schemes get any funding from the Government for their operation. Home-Start Athens has private funding and can to a large extent sustain its services. Home-Start Athens has run the Home-Start service since 2011 providing services to families and children. According to statistics from Home-Start Athens, in 2013 there were 14 volunteers in the Athens scheme serving 44 families and 119 children. Home-Start Athens, in collaboration with Home-Start Hellas made a successful application in 2014 and got resources from the European Economic Area (EEA) funds for NGOs to further develop its services and open a new scheme at Pireus (2014-16).

Event for the inauguration of Home-Start at PireusEvent for the inauguration of Home-Start at Pireus
Home-Start Nea Ionia-Volos has succeeded in a national bid and has had resources for two years (2013-14) to develop educational material and run parental education groups on matters concerning the raising of children, but it has not been able to secure resources to train volunteers and supervise volunteer family support.

The national office in Greece does not receive any money from the Government and is dependent on private donations and some income from events it organises. Recently it employed a fund-raiser to promote its fundraising activity. Within the context of the above mentioned EEA project, it has developed tools for the assessment of the volunteer service.

PLANS FOR THE FUTURE

HS Athens volunteers working together in a training sessionHS Athens volunteers working together in a training session
Our main concern is to sustain the new scheme at Pireus after the end of the project money in 2016. In the meantime, training activities for volunteers and staff are planned for 2015 and a Principles and Practice Guide for volunteers is going to be prepared.


What people are saying about our work

"I came into contact with Home-Start from a leaflet I found in the infant unit of the Children’s Hospital. I was already a mother of a 3-year old child and now of a baby of just a few weeks old. The Home-Start volunteer stood by me as a real friend. Together we discussed and dealt with the difficulties that I thought I could not transcend. The jealousy of little Ariadni, her denial to continue with her kindergarten, my lack of slee, the sicknesses of the baby and the difficulties with my work…I often say to my husband that I could not have managed without Home-Start! They were always there.

I hope that in the future, I have the opportunity to pay back as a volunteer the support I received"

A mother supported by Home-Start Athens

Updated:18th February 2015 by Evi Hatzivarnava Kazassi
Email address: ehatzivarnavakazassi@yahoo.gr


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