AHEPA-Canada (American Hellenic Educational Progressive Association) awarded on April 26, in an event held in the ballroom of the Chateau Laurier Hotel in Ottawa, the Prime Minister of Canada, Stephen Harper, with their highest honor, the Socrates Award.
According to the AHEPA-Canada press release, the award was “bestowed upon an individual who exemplifies the finest traditions of leadership and the promotion of democracy. He will be the fourth Canadian Prime Minister to receive the Socrates Award and will share this honor with past recipients Prime Minister John Diefenbaker, Prime Minister Brian Mulroney and Prime Minister Jean Chretien.”
Although Harper did not manage to attend the event, he said in his greeting: “It is a great honor to receive the Socrates Award and to be one of the few honored by the historic organization AHEPA for their leadership qualities and their contribution to the advancement of Democracy”.
The award, for the Prime Minister, was received by Canada’s Labor Minister Lisa Raitt, who stressed that she was impressed by AHEPA’s history and work not only in Canada, but worldwide.
During the event, George Vasilas, the AHEPA-Canada President, talked about the work of the organization during the 85 years of its function in Canada.
An increasingly number of Greeks are seeking their fortune in Canada due to the ongoing financial crisis that has put 1.3 million people out of work, and the Hellenic Community of Greater Montreal is trying to help those who come from the homeland.
The group will host an information session on April 17 at the Board Room/Stelios Kiliaris Mikri Vouli to provide information about the bureaucracy concerning immigration to Canada.
The Hellenic Social Services, working with the Citizenship & Immigration Ministry in Canada and with organizations specializing in matters of immigration is hosting the event under the title Demystifying the Immigration Process
Canada and Quebec are accessible to specialized professions according to the new legislation and as a result, this meeting will be multi-dimensional and especially important for those affected.
The Hellenic Community of Greater Montreal has been serving the Greek population of the greater Montreal area (Montreal, Laval and South Shore regions) since 1906. For more than 100 years, the HCGM has continuously been representing Quebec citizens of Greek origin, who have settled and continue to settle in the greater Montreal area.
The group said its goal is to constantly enrich and unify its members, by bringing them together, responding to their needs as well as, strengthening the bond with other cultural communities in the Greater Montreal area, as reported in the HCGM’s website.
Greek Foreign Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos met on Feb. 27 in the Canadian Senate with Senate Speaker Noel Kinsella, who highlighted the country’s close ties with Greece.
According to the Greek news agency AMNA, Kinsella also stressed that the Canadian MPs and Senators morally support their Greek colleagues “who are working hard to deal with the debt crisis in Greece.”
Avramopoulos underlined Greece’s deep appreciation to Canada, which he said had been the first country that trusted Greece during the huge economic crisis by making investments and expressed Greece’s gratitude to Canada for hosting Greek immigrants.
He said that Greece and Canada are bound with long-term ties of friendship based on mutuality, cooperation and great respect for democracy and human rights.
The Foreign Minister also called on Canadian entrepreneurs to carry out more investments in Greece expressed his pride for the Greek community in Canada. Kinsella hosted a reception at the Canadian Parliament in honor of Avramopoulos, who held discussions with several MPs and Senators as well as with members of the Greek community in Ottawa.
A Memorandum of Cooperation was signed between the Greek-Canadian Chamber and the Hellenic Chamber in Montreal. Avramopoulos was also scheduled to meet with his Canadian counterpart John Baird for talks focusing on the latest developments in Europe and the efforts to deal with the economic crisis, EU-Canada relations and the developments in Southeastern Europe and the region of the Eastern Mediterranean, AMNA reported.
According to the Foreign Ministry’s announcement, the Youth Mobility Agreement between Greece and Canada came into force on Feb. 1. The Agreement was signed during Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s visit to Greece, back in May 2011, and was ratified by the Hellenic Parliament on Oct.31, 2012.
This pioneering bilateral agreement provides for simplified procedures so that young Greek and Canadian citizens, between 18 and 35 can have the opportunity to travel, reside and work in each other’s country for up to 12 months, under the condition that they satisfy one of the following three prerequisites:
(a) They are graduates of post-secondary or tertiary education institutions and want to gain work experience, with a predetermined employment contract. (b) They are students at post-secondary or tertiary education institutions and want to do a predetermined internship. (c) They want to travel for a long vacation with the option of working temporarily to supplement their funds.
Interested Greek citizens may as well consult the Canadian Embassy website in Athens, while Canadian citizens may consult the Greek Embassy website in Ottawa. The necessary prerequisites and related documents will also be uploaded on the websites of the respective Ministries of Foreign Affairs.
Within the next few weeks, the Canadian company, Eldorado Gold Corp.’s investment in Perama, Evros, is expected to be given final approval by the Greek government to proceed, over the vociferous protests of some local residents who say it will damage the environment and hurt tourism, although backers say it will bring in critical jobs during Greece’s crushing economic crisis.
The approval of environmental impact assessment, which now requires only one signature, and the signature of the Minister for the Environment are the last steps for the company to begin work on a 150 million euros seems to be the final step in the process of 150 million euros ($200 million) investment.
This approval will lead to the issuance of environmental conditions’ permits and licenses for the mine in Perama. Then a technical report will be submitted to the competent authorities. Its approval will be the next step for the issuance of mining permits.
Greek Institute of Geo research, Perama ‘s subsoil has gold deposits of a value of 2 billion euros ($2.66 billion) along with an estimated 800 million euros ($1.065 billion) analysts have said.
Metropolitan Sotirios of Canada sounded the alarm about the decline of the Greek language due to globalization pressures in his encyclical on the occasion of the feast day of the Synaxis of the Three Holy Hierarchs.
His Eminence, from Toronto, and Exarch of All Canada, noted that, “many scholars as well as the Greek media are corrupting the Greek language. We watch and hear them every day on television even here in Canada.”
Metropolitan Sotirios, through his encyclical, calls Greek-Canadians, “to keep and protect the Greek culture, for the victory of the Orthodox light which is the Ttruth personified.” He urged all Greek-Orthodox to remain faithful to their traditions and culture.”Be careful not to deviate. The victory is yours,” he said in his call for the survival of the Greek Orthodox identity of the Canadian Diaspora.
Μητροπολίτης Σωτήριος: Να μείνουν πιστοί στις παραδόσεις τους οι ομογενείς
O εκκλησιαστικός ηγέτης του Καναδά, Κ. Σωτήριος στην εγκύκλιό του με αφορμή τον εορτασμό των Τριών Ιεραρχών κρούει τον κώδωνα του κινδύνου για την υποχώρηση της ελληνικής γλώσσας στις πιέσεις της παγκοσμιοποίησης.
Ο μητροπολίτης επισημαίνει ότι «γραμματισμένοι και τα μέσα ενημέρωσης της Ελλάδας -όχι όλοι βέβαια- που θα έπρεπε να είναι οι φύλακες της γνησιότητας της ελληνικής γλώσσας, επιτρέπουν την νοθεία της. Όχι µόνο την επιτρέπουν, κάµνουν τη νοθεία οι ίδιοι. Τους βλέπουµε και τους ακούµε καθηµερινά, στις τηλεοράσεις που φθάνουν κι εδώ στις µακρινές µας νέες πατρίδες».
Ο κ. Σωτήριος μέσα από την εγκύκλιό του καλεί τους Ελληνοκαναδούς, «όχι για τη διάσωση, αλλά για την επικράτηση του ελληνικού πολιτισµού. Για την επικράτηση του φωτός της Ορθοδοξίας που είναι η Αλήθεια προσωποποιηµένη».
Ο μητροπολίτης Καναδά προτρέπει τους Ελληνορθοδόξους να μείνουν πιστοί στις παραδόσεις τους και τον πολιτισμό τους, να μην αποκάμουν και να κατακτήσουν την κορυφή της πυραμίδας, που είναι η σωτηρία.
«Πρόσεχε μην αποκάμεις στο δρόμο. Η νίκη είναι δική σου» καταλήγει στην έκκληση για την επιβίωση της Ελληνορθόδοξης ταυτότητας των Ελλήνων της Καναδικής Διασποράς. (πηγή:ana-mpa)
Ετοιμάσαν τα Χριστουγεννιάτικα καλάθια με φαγητά και γλυκά από τις Κοινωνικές Υπηρεσίες της Ελληνικής Κοινότητας του Μόντρεαλ και μοιρασθηκαν μέχρι τα Χριστούγεννα σε 100 οικογένειες που έχουν ανάγκη. Τα καλάθια που εγιναν προορίζονταν κυρίως για γέρους και μονογονεϊκές οικογένειες, ενώ στον κύκλο των οικονομικά αδυνάμων προστέθηκαν και κάποιοι Έλληνες νεομετανάστες ή επαναπατρισθέντες μετανάστες ενώ κάποια δέματα με παιχνίδια προορίζονταν για οικογένειες με παιδιά. Περιέχουν φαγητά και γλυκά από τις Κοινωνικές Υπηρεσίες της Ελληνικής Κοινότητας του Μόντρεαλ για να μοιρασθηκαν τα Χριστούγεννα σε 100 οικογένειες που έχουν ανάγκη.
Στη Στέγη Ηλικιωμένων της Κοινότητας προσφέρθηκε το ετήσιο Χριστουγεννιάτικο γεύμα σε ανθρώπους της τρίτης ηλικίας με προσφορές από όλο το φάσμα της Ελληνικής Κοινότητας του Μόντρεαλ.
«Οι κοινωνικές υπηρεσίες της Ελληνικής Κοινότητας του Μόντρεαλ ετοιμάζουν κάθε χρόνο τη Χριστουγεννιάτικη συνεισφορά τους στην κοινωνία όχι μόνο την Ελληνική αλλά και την Κεμπεκιώτικη», δήλωσε η διευθύντρια Ελένη Φακωτάκη. (πηγή:ana-mpa)