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Greek leaders raise funds to honour Greek migrants to Australia for 200th anniversary of Greek Independence

Media release: Australian National Maritime Museum

Guests preview photographic exhibition of Greece’s Presidential Guards in ‘The Evzones Collection’ by Nick Bourdaniotis.

 

On Tuesday night, Sydney Greek leaders met to raise funds to honour the unsung migrant heroes of the Greek community on the National Monument to Migration at the Australian National Maritime Museum, in recognition of the 200th anniversary of Greek independence.

The Greek Independence Bicentenary Project Fund is a collaboration between the Museum, a group of Greek philanthropists and community organisations to honour Greek Australian migrants.

 

The individuals being honoured will be chosen by the Greek community in partnership with the Greek Welfare Centre.

The event, at Ripples Maritime Museum, featured remarkable images from The Evzones Collection by photographer Nick Bourdaniotis and, thanks to the generosity of the photographer, two were auctioned for the Bicentenary Project Fund.

On the night $32,950 was raised. This will be added to $18,400 already raised from a range of donors including philanthropists Bill Drakopoulos, Emmanuel Alfieris, Ahepa National Educational Fund Incorporated, the Daughters of Penelope, the Lemnos Association of NSW and Ahepa NSW.

All donations in support of the Greek Independence Bicentenary Project are fully tax-deductible and can be made to the Museum until 30 June 2022. The Project aspires to honour 200 people of Greek heritage who do not have the means to donate for the commemoration.

Bill Drakopoulos said, ‘We are part of a long chain of proud Greek migrants who have forged new lives in our new home. We remain proud to be Greek and proud to be Australian. It is a great chance to honour those who came before us.’

‘All Australians stand on the shoulders of our predecessors. We live in a beautiful country with peace and prosperity. And we owe a debt of gratitude to those who carved the original journey for us to follow’, added Emmanuel Alfieris.

‘The museum has long recognised the important role of Greek migrants in the shaping of modern Australia and we are delighted to support this special initiative from the community to include more Greek Australians on the National Monument to Migration’ said the museum’s Acting Director, Tanya Bush.

About the National Monument to Migration

Australia’s National Monument to Migration commemorates those who have migrated from countries around the world to make Australia their new home. The name of any person who was born overseas and settled into Australia may be registered on the monument.

The National Monument features more than 30,000 names, including 1,623 of Greek heritage. Currently Greece is number five of the top ten countries of origin listed.

The museum requests a brief story about each person being honoured on the National Monument for publication on the museum’s website. The museum is amassing a selection of stories from these migrants; stories that, in turn, build the history of modern Australia.

In 2021 the Governor General of Australia, His Excellency, General the Honourable David Hurley AC DSC elevated the status of the Museum’s Welcome Wall, renaming it Australia’s National Monument to Migration.

The National Monument to Migration is situated at the Australian National Maritime Museum lining its northern promenade facing Pyrmont Bay – historically near a place where many migrants arrived in Sydney.

For further information go to https://www.sea.museum/greek-campaign

For further information please contact:

Steve Riethoff
Head of Communication
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 0417 047 837

Photos by George Karantonis / Image Smart

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