Location

Greece

Key achievement

Diogenes NGO

Network Member

Diogenes NGO is a non-profit organisation that launched the “Kick Out Poverty” campaign in Greece back in 2007. Homeless people, people on drug rehabilitation programmes and asylum seekers are the groups in focus. Since then, Diogenes has developed a series of social projects and programmes.

 

Diogenes runs the Kick Out Poverty campaign, incorporating the Greek National Homeless Football Team which every year participates in the Homeless World Cup – a sporting, but mainly social global movement that uses the power of football to energize people to change their own lives. Through football and a series of other activities, people are supported and encouraged to address a broad range of issues that affect their lives. These include people's rights and education, the promotion of good health, fair play, anti-discrimination, social change and integration. Visits to schools and organising street football tournaments nationwide, encouraging and promoting participation of people who are experiencing social exclusion are an integral part of the “Kick Out Poverty” activities. Greece is the only country in the history of the Homeless World Cup that has earned the “Fair Play” Award three times (2007, 2015, 2016). The motto of the Greek Homeless Football Project is: “we play football to become better people and not necessarily better footballers.”

 

In February 2013, Diogenes NGO launched the first Greek street paper: “Shedia” (which means ”raft”).“Shedia” belongs to the International Network of Street Papers (www.insp.ngo). Street publications are independent newspapers and magazines that provide unique employment opportunities for people experiencing poverty, homelessness and long-term unemployment. Vendors buy copies at a price of 50% or lower than the cover price, then sell them, keeping the proceeds. It is a unique employment opportunity, enabling the world's most disadvantaged people to earn a dignified income and rebuild their lives.

 

The “Invisible tours” is a social tours programme based in Athens, in which homeless people become tour guides in a very different kind of a city walk. The tour introduces visitors to some of the important social and solidarity institutions of the Greek capital (soup kitchens, drug rehabilitation centres, homeless shelters etc). The goal of these social tours is to energize the person who is leading the tour and to create new ways for him/her to support himself/herself, providing new training and educational opportunities and supporting them to move a step closer to social (re)integration.

 

Diogenes NGO organises a wide range of activities and social programmes, always aiming to enable people to support themselves and to raise social awareness. Photography, literature reading, theatre groups and ceramics classes are some of these activities that energize and empower people who are currently experiencing homelessness and social exclusion, providing them, in addition, with training, educational and employment opportunities.

 

Firmly believing in the power of sport in effecting social change. Apart from football, Diogenes NGO has formed and supports running, basketball and petanque teams.

Social Topics

Employability
Enviroment
Peace Building
Social Integration
Youth leadership

Contact

Diogenes NGO
Chris Alefantis
c.alefantis@shedia.gr

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“Playing football is about becoming better people. Better for ourselves and for the rest of society. We always look how we can really become better people through sport, through our interactions and the little challenges that we face on the field. How we deal with on field victories, the lessons we learn from our sporting defeats and how we turn them, too, into victories on and off the field. We talk with our players constantly about how, through the wonderful game of football, we can bring the best out of ourselves, how we improve as people and as a small social unit and take this from the pitch to our real lives. That’s what it is about. This is football”

Chris Alefantis
Founder “Kick Out Poverty”, Greece
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