Continuing its strong tradition of humanitarian aid to the less fortunate, the Church of Greece gave more than $136 million to various philanthropic events and projects in 2018.
The Greek Church’s Synodal Committee for Social Welfare received figures in late June that show that more than $136,061,062 (121,530,510 euros) were allocated for humanitarian assistance programs, reports the Orthodoxia News Agency.
The data also shows that more than 1 million people received some form of assistance from the Church through its vast network of more than 98,000 points of assistance throughout the country. The help came mainly in the form of meals and groceries collected by parishes, offered by Church food pantries, or delivered to the doorstep of those in need.
The Church also operates initiatives to support unwed mothers, refugees, students, the elderly, the sick, and others. The Church has intensified the organization of social structures in recent years, according to the committee’s report. In particular, the committee points to the recent inauguration of the Athanasios Martinos 1 & 2 Shelter of Supported Living—part of the Archdiocese of Athens’ M. Kokkori Foundation for the Care of People with Intellectual Disabilities or Down Syndrome.
Nearly 15,000 volunteers take part in the Church’s various programs.
In April, the Holy Synod approved the allocation of $225,000 (200,000 euros) to 100 families whose homes were affected in the fires that swept through Attica in the summer of 2018. According to the last report, the number was upped to nearly $354,000 (316,000 euros) to 158 families, reports Romfea.
The Church spent $147 million in social aid in 2016.