Specifically, the Foundation, in collaboration with the Greek Ministry of Interior, has approved a grant of €4.5 million to support nursery schools and childcare centers across the country. The initiative aims to help mothers who wish to enroll their children in daycare facilities and are unable to do so for financial reasons, so that they are able to join the work force.
The grant will enable an additional 3,000 children to enroll in day care centers, at a time when demand for childcare services is up by 43% in comparison to the previous year. In providing this support, the Foundation hopes to assist low-income employed and unemployed mothers and their families, and to provide much-needed relief from their daily struggles.
At the beginning of the new school year, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation will increase also its support of the not-for-profit organization Prolepsis (www.prolepsis.gr), in order to allow them to continue and expand their food aid and nutrition education program in schools, during the 2012-2013 academic year. The additional support follows the success of the April-June 2012 pilot program of 34 schools in Athens and Thessaloniki, which involved a total of 6,272 students. The second grant of €5.3 million aims to assist at least 18,000 public school students, located in areas mostly affected by the crisis.
In addition, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation is funding an immunization program, which will benefit more than 1,000 impoverished Greek and immigrant children lacking basic healthcare services. The program is implemented through a €200,000 grant to the not-for-profit organization Mission Anthropos (www.missionanthropos.com).
The Co-President of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, Mr. Andreas Dracopoulos, stated on behalf of his colleagues on the Board of Directors: “Through these grants, the Foundation continues its commitment to assist, to the extent of our abilities, all those that the current socio-economic crisis has impacted in the most severe and direct way. Our concern is especially for the children, who rely on us. Through food aid, immunization programs, and support for the country’s nursery schools, we hope not only to help the children, but also to provide some relief for their parents, currently facing unprecedented hardship”.