CHICAGO – The Hellenic Foundation of Chicago held its first-ever virtual 2020 Annual Grant Awards celebration on December 15, announcing this year’s grant recipients and recognizing the efforts of the organizations that have benefited from past Hellenic Foundation grants.
The Honorable Anthony C. Kyriakopoulos hosted this year’s event, which included a special appearance from His Eminence Metropolitan Nathanael of Chicago, and spotlights from celebrities Lou Canellis of FOX 32 News, Jane Monzures Clauss of WGN-TV, Anna Davlantes of WGN Radio, and Melina Kanakaredes from the hit show Providence.
“We learn to be philotimoi through organizations like the Hellenic Foundation,” Kanakaredes said. “I am so proud of this organization – I love what they do for our giagiades and papoudes, and I love what they do for our future grandchildren and great-grandchildren, holding on to what makes us special and celebrating the many talents that we all have by giving grants to different organizations.”
Since the establishment of the Hellenic Foundation grant program in 2016, the Hellenic Foundation has awarded more than $1 million to programs, projects, and organizations that serve the Chicago area’s Greek and Pan-Orthodox community.
“By supporting existing charitable organizations, whose missions intersect with ours, the Hellenic Foundation can help our community more directly and more efficiently than we could have ever done on our own,” said Hellenic Foundation Director, Louie Kontos.
Hellenic Foundation Assistant Secretary Nicholas Geroulis, and Hellenic Foundation Director Louie Kontos discuss the importance of supporting charitable organizations in the Hellenic community.
This year’s celebration also featured the endeavors of the following organizations: Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago, Saint Iakovos Retreat Center, PanHellenic Scholarship Foundation, National Hellenic Invitational Basketball Tournament (NHIBT), National Hellenic Museum, Hellenic Legal Assistance Services (Hel.LAS), Metropolis of Chicago Philoptochos Society, and the Greek American Rehabilitation and Care Centre.
“What the new year will bring is hard to say, but whatever it does it’s going to be a challenge and we will be there to face it,” said Helen Theodosakis, co-chair of the Metropolis Philoptochos Philanthropic Committee. “I want to express my appreciation to the Hellenic Foundation for the collaboration in the work that we are doing.”
Director and Past President of the Hellenic Foundation William P. Vranas presented this year’s grant recipients and their 2021 initiatives. They included: the 13th District Order of AHEPA Scholarship Foundation, the American Farm School, Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church of Kankakee, Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, Asia Minor and Pontos Hellenic Research Center, Daughters of Penelope 13th District Scholarship Foundation, Greek American Rehabilitation and Care Centre, Hellenic Link-Midwest, Orthodox Vocation and Ministry Services, PanHellenic Scholarship Foundation, Saint Iakovos Retreat Center, and Saints Peter and Paul Greek Orthodox Church of Glenview.
“I would like to say thank you to the Hellenic Foundation for awarding the Daughters of Penelope this wonderful grant,” said Electra Kontalonis, treasurer of the Daughters of Penelope 13th District Scholarship Foundation. “It will be used to help students in our area, and with that I would like to wish everyone a happy and healthy and safe holiday season.”
The Hellenic Foundation’s mission is to fund the development and support of programs and projects benefiting the Greek American and Orthodox Christian communities in the Chicagoland area. Their services address the needs of elderly, youth, and families of the community.