Regeneration & Progress (R&P) is a nonprofit organization supported exclusively by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation that is working to make an impact in the areas of health and sports in Greece. For R&P, these two concepts are inextricably linked; sports are one of the most powerful tools we have to promote healthy living. R&P works with everyone from residents of remote islands in need of basic medical examinations to top athletes striving for a place at the Olympics.
R&P’s ambitious, groundbreaking Mobile Medical Units (MMU) program is tailored to Greece’s particular healthcare needs. Greece’s far-flung islands and distinct mainland regions help give the country its special character. But this geography can make it difficult for residents of remote or isolated areas to get the care they need. In 2014, the Mobile Medical Units flipped this problem on its head by bringing specialist healthcare to the islands and to non-metropolitan regions of the mainland on regular medical missions. Care from the MMU is free, provided by medical professionals volunteering their time, and electronic medical records created for each patient provide a basis for long-term health.
Just as it seeks to improve health outcomes in remote areas directly through access to medical care, R&P also seeks to provide there the opportunities for enjoyable physical activity it views as critical for health. The Sports Paths program gets kids around Greece moving—and loving it. Likewise, regular sports activities at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center in Athens regularly engage large groups of school-age kids. Runners of all ages take part in the three annual runs organized by R&P. Two of them take place in Athens, one ringing in the New Year and the other as part of the SNF Nostos that take place each June. The third one, which is a mountainous run, is organized in the village of Vamvakou, in the context of Vamvakou Revival. For high-performance athletes, R&P’s Sports Excellence program provides personalized metrics and input on healthful training, offering insights to help young Greek athletes compete at the highest international levels.
In 2020, Regeneration & Progress adapted its work to the needs and challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic. Among the many adapted services of R&P were phone consultations for residents of remote areas of Greece with Mobile Medical Unit doctors, interactive online training sessions for young athletes and sports seminars, online sports programs and activities which creatively engage children living on remote islands, as well as activities for the whole family.
To learn more about the work of Regeneration & Progress, visit their website, available in Greek.