Out Here: a short documentary on the impacts of the Greek crisis

For more than a decade, Greece experienced a deep, draining economic crisis triggered by the global financial crisis of 2008. In response, SNF established two major new initiatives to respond to the dire effects of this crisis, in addition to the Foundation’s usual grantmaking: Grants Against the Greek Crisis and Recharging the Youth.

Grants Against the Greek Crisis

SNF established an emergency grant initiative, Grants Against the Greek Crisis, to assist in mitigating the worst effects of the socioeconomic crisis by supporting nonprofit organizations directly serving those most in need.

During the first phase of the initiative starting in 2012, 220 grants totaling $130 million helped ensure the sustainability of hundreds of Greek nonprofit organizations and the vital social programs they were offering. Building on the impacts of the first phase of the initiative, a second phase intensified efforts, allocating an additional $112 million in grants beginning in June 2015.

Grants in both phases of the initiative went to support a wide variety of organizations, but particular areas of focus included healthcare, food, and housing. In the area of healthcare, SNF grants went to strengthening radiotherapy capabilities in public hospitals, emergency response infrastructure, and access to care in remote parts of Greece. In food, SNF helped provide healthy meals to kids in public schools and nutrition education to families. And in housing, SNF supported day centers for the homeless in Athens and Thessaloniki and helped housing-insecure families avoid homelessness.

See the stories of people living through the crisis through Out Here, a short documentary commissioned by SNF, and read about the impacts of the initiative, in summary or in full, as assessed by Deloitte.

The impacts of the Grants Against the Greek Crisis persist today, from bolstered health infrastructure improving access to care, to the work of the many nonprofit organizations serving the most vulnerable that were able to stay viable through the crisis.

Recharging the Youth

In August 2013, official statistics showed that unemployment for young people in Greece had reached an alarming rate, exceeding 60%. That October, SNF’s Board of Directors issued a call to action to help create new opportunities for Greece’s younger generations, committing $136 million through a long-term grant initiative, Recharging the Youth.

In announcing this new initiative, SNF aimed not only to assist unemployed young people in Greece, but also to establish a forum and develop a paradigm for discussing effective ways to address the issue.

The Foundation recognized that revitalizing the employment landscape for young people could not be accomplished through philanthropic resources alone, but would require innovative collaborations and the convergence of the public, private, and philanthropic sectors. To this end, the Foundation convened a conference in New York City in April 2014 that brought together economists, policy makers, foundations, nonprofits, government officials, and business leaders to explore enterprising projects that could provide job opportunities.

SNF’s work to provide meaningful opportunity to young Greeks continues today, aided by alumni of SNF-supported programs in turn creating opportunities for their young compatriots.