«Friends of Ikaria» AISBL – Activity report 2020

2020 was a difficult year for our association. The COVID-19 pandemie stopped most of our activities. Neither could we implement projects on Ikaria as we have imagined nor could we raise funds as we wished for. Nevertheless the association remained active within its possibilities.

Changes in the Management Board

In January 2020 Nadia Ikonomou and Niki Kastania resigned from their posts as Treasurer and General Secretary. We convened an extraordinary General Assembly, which took place on 03 July 2020 – due to COVID-19 restrictions – in a video format. The result is as follows:

  • Birgit Urban – President
  • Assimakis Katsiaris – Treasurer
  • Nikos Plakas – General Secretary

Projects financed on Ikaria

    1. Easter and Christmas presents for the staff of the Ikarian hospital
      As a „Thank you“ for the efforts of the staff of the Ikarian hospital during lock-down times and beyond we delivered Ikarian local products (Easter buns, cakes and nuts) at Easter and Christmas.
      Costs: 200,- EUR

    2. Making of‘ the Ikarian hiking trails
      Even though we had to cancel our Volunteer Hiking Holidays – planned for Easter 2020 – the marking of the Atheras trial continues. We supported this volunteer work of the Ikarian Hiking Club „OPSIkarias“ by sending best wishes and money.
      Costs: 250,- EUR

    3. Provision of the Ikarian hospital with masks
      In June 2020 we joined an initiative of different associations in buying masks to protect staff and visitors of the Ikarian hospital.
      Costs: 400,- EUR

    4. Support of the Nautical Club Ikaria „NOI“ to build up a youth section
      The Nautical Club Ikaria is a young sailing club, located in the Marina of Agios Kirikos on Ikaria. This summer they started a youth section in order to give the young Ikarians a perspective as captains at the Ikarian shore. We supported this valuable work of education by equipping them with 2 sails for their sailing boats ( „Optmists“).
      Costs: 500,- EUR.

    5. Crowd-funding project to finance a 2nd hand fire engine for the volunteer fire-brigaders in Agios Kirikos
      On 13 August 2020 a fire in Monokambi has caused great damages in the area. Fortunately no people came to harm, but the incident highlighted the difficult work situation of the volunteer fire brigade.
      In order to speed up the financing of the 2nd hand fire engine, that is necessary to replace old material, we put up a “crowd-funding project” on our Facebook-page.
      So far we have collceted 2.577 EUR. The crowd funding continues on our webpage

    6. Selling local products in Brussels
      From the panigyri in 2019 had some „left-overs“, which we continued to sell during 2020.
      Income: 599,40 EUR
      Cost: 342,00 EUR
      Net-Income: 257,40 EUR

    7. Development of our membership:
      At the end of 2020 the association is based on 44 members; in 2020 5 new members joined in.
      Income from membership fees : 260,- EUR

Another fire engine for the volunteer fire brigaders on Ikaria

Meeting of the associations „Volunteer Firefighters on Ikaria“ with „SAFeRS“

SAFeRS e. V (Support association for fire- and rescue services) is a German association of volunteer firefighters, who is aiming at a collaboration with volunteer firefighters in Greece. They are supporting the work of these Greek associations by providing 2nd hand material and training.

For 3  years we are in contact with them in order to organize material and support for the volunteer firefighters on Ikaria. Already in 2017 they visited the association in Agios Kirikos and provided them with some material. They are the leader of our common project „2nd hand fire engine for Ikaria“. They are looking for the corresponding fire engine; together with SAFeRS and the volunteer firefighters in Agios Kirikos Friends of Ikaria is organising the funding for the purchase and the transport of the fire engine. When the engine is found, they will transport it to Ikaria.
The visit in summer 2020 (28.08. – 02.09.20) was aiming at getting an overview of the specific situation on the island (material available/needed, landscape, training)  especially after the heavy fire in Monokambi. Representatives of SAFeRS  and Friends of Ikaria met with the associations of the volunteer fire fighters on Ikaria (Agios Kirikos and Avlaki) as well as with the professional firefighters in Agios Kirikos. We als met  the mayor of Ikaria and the vice-mayor in Raches. Furthermore SAFeRS gave interviews on radio ERT and Ikariaki, where they informed about their work in Greece and on Ikaria.

We are very grateful that the representatives of SAFeRs took the time for this visit, which gave us valuable information how to proceed together with the Ikarians to make the fire engine happen.