Australians of Greek heritage honoured at St George Community Awards


Three Australians of Greek heritage – Christina Ioannidou, Chrysanthi Diasinou and Maria Dalamaras – were recognised at the 13th annual St George Community Awards held on Thursday, November 16.

The awards were a resounding success, reflecting the diversity and sweeping range of contributions of volunteers and volunteer organisations to the St George community.

The St George district encompasses southern Sydney from Sydney Airport to the Georges River, Salt pan Creek and the M5 Motorway. The area is home to close to 300,000 people with Greeks comprising some ten per cent.

The awards are an initiative of the Liberal Member for Oatley and Shadow Minister for Multiculturalism, Mark Coure MP.

“Volunteering is at the heart of our local area and it is so important that we celebrate the contributions of those who give their time, effort and energy to others,” Mr Coure said.

People can be recognised across one of eight award categories including the Individual Volunteer Achievement Award, the Youth Achievement Award, the Community Group Achievement Award, the Business Achievement Award, the Multicultural Communities Award, the Senior Volunteer Achievement Award, the Sporting Achievement Award, and the Sharyn Andersen-Cullis Environmental Achievement Award.

Christina Ioannidou:

St George Community Awards
Christina Ioannidou (right) with Mark Coure MP.

Christina Ioannidou won the Individual Volunteer Achievement Award for her work with the Pontian community in Sydney.

Together with her family, Ms Ioannidou migrated to Australia about six years ago, settling in Sydney. Soon afterwards, she returned to her passion: teaching traditional dances of the Hellenes (Greeks) of Pontos, the region around the Black Sea.

Over the last five years, she has grown the Senior Dance Group of the Pontoxeniteas NSW to over 40 regular performers, aged from teenagers to grandparents.

Ms Ioannidou prepares the choreography and the music, encouraging young musicians to accompany the dance performances with live music; even teaching the dancers traditional songs which accompany the dancers. Rehearsals run for about 2.5 hours each Friday evening, with additional sessions scheduled for special performances.

The Pontoxeniteas Senior Group is now capable of presenting a 20-minute programme, performing fifteen different dances in that time, a credit as much to the instructor as to the performers. Under her leadership, the Pontoxeniteas Senior Group has become highly sought after at Hellenic community events and multicultural festivals.

An illustration of Ms Ioannidou’s dedication to her particular regional Hellenic culture is that she is not paid a cent for her services.

Chrysanthi Diasinou:

St George Community Awards
Chrysanthi Diasinou (right) with Mark Coure MP.

Chrysanthi Diasinou was recognised with a Youth Achievement Award on the night.

Ms Diasinou is a recent university graduate, a dedicated member of the Greek Orthodox Christian Society, and serves as a Sunday School teacher and in other volunteer capacities.

One of her passions is her Pontian Hellenic heritage – her maternal ancestors were Hellenes (Greeks) of Pontos, the region around the Black Sea. An illustration of this dedication was that in 2022, Ms Diasinou was shortlisted in the Calibre Essay Prize for her creative work about the Pontian dialect.

She is also a member of the Senior Dance Group of the Pontoxeniteas Association of NSW, spending many Friday evenings and parts of weekends rehearsing for performances of traditional music and dance of the Pontos region.

Her passion for culture has expanded into music, learning to play the traditional stringed-instrument, the lyra, as part of the Kogarah-based Melisma Ensemble which performs Orthodox ecclesiastical music, as well as music from the folk traditions of Greece and the broader Eastern Mediterranean region.

Maria Dalamaras:

maria dalamaras
Maria Dalamaras.

Maria Dalamaras received the Business Achievement Award at the St George Community Awards.

“My business, Rio Consulting Group a Digital Marketing Agency, was highlighted in recognition of this achievement, marking the second consecutive year I’ve had the privilege of receiving this esteemed award,” Ms Dalamaras said.

“One of the most memorable moments of the evening was the opportunity to accept this award in the presence of my mother, Irene Kerasis, a tremendous pillar of support in my life. I also want to express my heartfelt gratitude to my husband, Bill, whose unwavering understanding and support have been pivotal as I navigate the roles of an entrepreneur and a mother to our two wonderful boys- Gregorio and Paul.

“Our commitment to serving the St George Community is reflected in the fact that 90 per cent of our clients are based in this vibrant community. I consider myself fortunate to be part of such a wonderful environment, surrounded by passionate and thriving small businesses.”




By subscribing you accept our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.


Latest News

Melbourne’s Joanna Charaktis to referee at Paris Olympics under FIFA

Following the FIFA Women’s World Cup, Joanna Charaktis has been chosen as Assistant Referee in the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris, France.

Anthony Koutoufides considers running for Melbourne Lord Mayor

AFL great Anthony Koutoufides has revealed he has been considering a run for Lord Mayor of Melbourne in the upcoming council elections.

Andrew Liveris: Brisbane 2032 Olympics are ahead of schedule

Brisbane Olympics president Andrew Liveris spoke to the International Olympic Committee to address stadium plan for the 2032 Games.

Steve Georganas MP meets with Greece’s Deputy Foreign Minister

Greece's Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Giorgos Kotsiras, met with a delegation of the World Hellenic Inter-parliamentary Association.

Australian PM visits Greek restaurant in Queensland during holiday with fiancée

Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese took a five-day holiday that has been under heavy scrutiny by the hard-working Australian public.

You May Also Like

Zavros family rescued from SA outback after being stranded for five days

"We feel safe now," Ori Zavros said. ”It's been emotional, a bit of a rollercoaster but we got through it.”

Greek Australian business owner talks about being a Tier 1 exposure site in Melbourne

Wani Sakellaropoulos is the co-owner of Ms. Frankie’s and says she has a bad case of déjà vu after being told to shut her doors for 14 days.

High olive oil prices worldwide: Are they worth paying?

Olive Oil prices have received an all time high, however studies have shown that it's health benefits are what makes it worth buying.