AHEPA hosts 68th Annual National Convention

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AHEPA is one of the largest and oldest global service organizations of Greek origin. The organisation has chapters in the US, Canada, Greece, Cyprus and NZ and has positively impacted many lives by promoting education, philanthropy and social responsibility through community service and volunteerism.

The National body of AHEPA (Australasian Hellenic Educational Progressive Association) held its annual Convention at Ramsgate NSW from 14th to the 17th October.

The National Convention was very productive and it laid out the organisations future plans. The Convention was conducted in the spirit of mutual respect, harmony and the friendship that characterises the true AHEPA.

The OPENING CEREMONY was hosted by the Grand Lodge and District Lodge of NSW on Friday 14th and was by all accounts a resounding success.

Mr George Lianos, the National President of AHEPA Australia, said that “…at the National Convention our organisation paid homage to the creation of AHEPA in the USA and its 100 years of service…and we celebrated the fact that AHEPA Australia is now 88 years old, having been established on 15 August, 1934, at Werris Creek, NSW… AHEPA Australia represents the true AHEPA members who are dedicated to improving community standards by leading social, educational and charitable initiatives for the common good…”

The official guests who had attended the Opening Ceremony were: 

  • His Grace Bishop Christodoulos representing his Eminence Archibishop Makarios,
  • The Consul General of Greece in Sydney Mr Ioannis Mallikourtis,
  • His Excellency Anthonis Sammoutis, High Commissioner of the Republic of Cyprus,
  • The Honourable Matt Thistlethwaite MP, member for Kingsford Smith,
  • Miss Tina Koutsogiannis Partnering Manager, The Australian National Maritime Museum, Greek Bicentenary Fund,
  • Ms Elizabeth Kaydos, Producer and Researcher, SBS production: “Lemnos: Heroes behind Gallipoli” and representative of the Lemnian Association of NSW;
  • Mr Panikos Achileos, President of the Cyprus Hellene Club and his wife Thalia.

The officials, the members, their families and guests were entertained and inspired by a real treasure of the Greek Australian community the superb vocalist Ms Helen Zerefos OAM.

Ms Christine Lynch on behalf of the National Education Fund of AHEPA Australia made two donations. The first was to Mrs Tina Koutsogiannis from Australian Maritime Museum for the Greek Bicentenial Project and the second one to Ms Elizabeth Kaydos for the SBS Documentary production of “Lemnos: Heroes behind Gallipoli”.

The National Convention also featured a round table discussion with the Consul General of Greece in Sydney Mr Ioannis Mallikourtis and his excellence Mr Anthonis Sammoutis, High Commissioner of the Republic of Cyprus. The discussion touched on topics of National significance that are currently impacting both Greece and Cyprus against the context of a War in Europe, the energy crisis and the impact of a looming global recession. The discussion also evolved around the key priorities for the two countries when it comes to Greek Australian relations. The highlight of the discussion was to establish a more productive framework with key Associations, Business groups and non-for-profit organisations to help the representatives of Greece and Cyprus achieve better co-operation with the Greek Australian Community.

Elections were also held for the new Committee for the following year. The President George Lianos from Sydney and the Vice-President Sophia Notaras from Canberra thanks all those members who took part from all the other States.

The 68th National Convention concluded on Monday with the promise to continue working under the values of the true AHEPA members who are dedicated to community support, volunteering and promoting positive social change for the common good.

We wanted to thank the officials who honoured us with their presence and all the members for their service.

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