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The boxes filled with items collected for the earthquake victims were packed by volunteers onto pallets, wrapped and ready to be transported to JFK airport for the flight to Turkey. (Photo by Panos Adamopoulos)
NEW YORK – The Athenians’ Society of New York contributed to the earthquake relief effort by collecting much-needed essential items for the earthquake victims and delivering them to the Turkish House in Manhattan on February 17.
Athenians’ Society of New York President Panos Adamopoulos noted that the items, including blankets, clothing, medical supplies, baby food, and diapers were collected for the earthquake victims and were intended for the earthquake victims only.
He noted that the effort was “for our neighbors, our brothers I would say, because each person in this hour of need brings to light feelings of solidarity, compassion, and the need to reach out to help is automatic and the Athenians’ Society in its long history in all the difficult times has stood by people with its philanthropic efforts and at this time for the Turkish people who are suffering and the Syrian people as well, though the Society has had difficulty in finding a way to help the Syrians specifically, but we hope to be able to do so soon.”
“All the aid that we are sending is going towards the intended purpose,” Adamopoulos added. He then thanked all the Board members of the Athenians’ Society who sprang into action to help and all those present including his son Constantine, daughter Athena, and wife Sylvia, who is also the Society’s Secretary, Society member Yiannis Gigos, and the media who covered the event.
Adamopoulos hopes that the Society’s efforts will serve as an example to inspire others as well as the Greek-American community organizations to do what they can to help the earthquake victims. “The tragedy is indescribable and the pain unbearable, it’s incomprehensible,” Adamopoulos told The National Herald of the devastation following the earthquake, noting that the Society’s response was “from the heart.”
“The Embassy is right next door to us where we live in Manhattan,” Adamopoulos said. “My wife and I first took it upon ourselves personally to give clothes the second day of the earthquake. Then the idea came to me that the whole Athenians’ Society should be able to help.”
“We pass by the Turkish House every day,” he told TNH, adding that on Saturday, as volunteers loaded the boxes of items onto pallets heading to JFK airport for the flight to Turkey, “we stopped by just now and took some pictures.”
“They were so thankful when we told them that what they were packing just now was all the packages that we dropped off last night from the Athenians’ Society,” Adamopoulos said. “They were so thankful. It was an unbelievably moving experience. These are young kids, innocent, educated, have nothing to do with politics and they all love Greece.”
Adamopoulos also shared the great appreciation for all of the Athenians’ Society Board members and friends and thanked them for contributing to the effort.
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