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Greek Community Care Services Volunteer Morning Tea
Within the framework of the National Volunteer Week 2021, the Greek Orthodox
Community of SA – Community Care Services honoured and acknowledged their
volunteers with a Morning Tea in a beautifully set up Olympic Hall on Wednesday
23rd June 2021. The event was attended by approximately 50 volunteers along with
Mr Bill Gonis OAM, President of the Greek Orthodox Community of South Australia,
Mr David Jacquier on behalf of Mrs Tracey Fox Acting CEO of Volunteering SA &
Northern Territory, Mr Constantinos Papaconstantinou, Vice President of the Greek
Orthodox Community of South Australia and Mr Panayiotis Ppiros, General Secretary
of the Greek Orthodox Community of South Australia.
The event was opened with the Acknowledgement of Country by Community
Services Manager Mrs Jacqui Bowden, who in her succinct speech expressed her
appreciation towards the volunteers for their commitment to supporting and
honouring our older people.
In his speech, the President of the Greek Orthodox Community, Mr Bill Gonis OAM,
highlighted the valuable and tireless contribution of GOCSA’s Women’s Fellowships
(Taxiarchis, St. Constantine & Helen, Panagia, St. Nicholas), thanks to which GOCSA’s
mission is much smoother. The President also thanked our independent volunteers
who assist with transport, shopping, friendly visits, exercise classes or help in the
kitchen of our social support groups. Thirdly, Mr Gonis acknowledged and welcomed
the volunteer committees of the affiliated groups of the Greeks of Egypt and Middle
East Society, the Greek Union of Aged Pensioners of Thebarton & Suburbs, the
Colossus Pan Rhodian Society and the Pan-Ikarian Brotherhood.
“The theme for National Volunteer Week in 2021 – was and still is to "Recognise.
Reconnect. Reimagine… In the current changing environment, where Australians are
time-poor and experiencing higher degrees of uncertainty and stress, we need to
reimagine how we do things. We need to collaborate more and adapt our
volunteering practices and programs so we can better support and engage
volunteers to continue the necessary work that they do”, Mr Gonis said.
Mr David Jacquier, representing Mrs Tracey Fox, A/CEO at Volunteering SA & NT
mentioned in his speech that “at the height of the pandemic last year, two out of
three volunteers stopped volunteering which added to the existing decline in
volunteer numbers which was down 7 percent in 2019/2020.
After the speeches, delicious savoury pies and Greek sweets were served in small
bamboo boats, followed by luscious fruit platters placed on the finely decorated
The event concluded with a presentation by Mrs Annelise Van Deth from Aged Rights
Advocacy Service (ARAS) who spoke about the role of ARAS, the rights of older people
as well as elder abuse prevention.
Adelaide, South Australia