Known for housing Greek university students in the French capital, The Hellenique Fondation (HF) in Paris, also referred to as ‘Greek House’ is in desperate need of renovations.
According to Maria Gravari-Barbas, director of HF and Professor at Paris 1 Pantheon-Sorbonne University, the student rooms need to be urgently renovated so the facility can meet the safety requirements and building standards set by the French authorities. If the necessary renovations are not undertaken soon, the building may have to be shut down.
Renovation work to be done includes updating the electrical wiring, replacing the old plumbing pipes and installing individual showers and toilets in the rooms.
In an effort to continue providing its services, the HF has launched two fundraising campaigns and also appealed to the private sector for financial aid.
The first one is called “A room in your name”, where donors can adopt one of the 80 rooms for 2,500 euros. Forty-five rooms have already been adopted, with names appearing at the FH website: https://fondation-hellenique.fr/nos-mecenes-et-donateurs-actuels/
The second one is a crowdfunding campaign aiming to raise 50,000 euros to meet accessibility requirements for people with reduced mobility. Contibutions starting from 20 euros can be made here: https://dartagnans.fr/fr/projects/rendons-accessible-la-fondation-hellenique/campaign
It is reported that the Stavros Niarchos Foundation is making a gift of 1.1 million euros, on condition that the Foundation raises 400,000 euros by the end of the year so that the renovation can start in June 2019.
The HF was built in 1932 by architect Nikolas Zachos on the initiative of then Greek Ambassador Nikolas Politis, and has hosted a great number of Greek students, among them many famous intellectuals.