Labor Announces 1.8M in Funding for Five Greek Centre Hubs in Melbourne

Greek Centre

Earlier today at the community hall at the Greek Community of Melbourne’s (GCM) St Demetrios site in Australia’s Melbourne city of Windsor, the Australian Labor Party’s Bill Shorten MP Shadow Minister for the NDIS, Andrew Giles Shadow Minister for Multicultural Affairs, Labor Candidate for Higgins Dr Michelle Ananda -Rajah announced a 1.8 million dollar commitment for the GCM’s Greek Centre Hub project.

On hand at the Windsor site to meet with the Labor candidates and receive the good news was GCM President Bill Papastergiadis OAM and Vice Presidents Dr Jim Bossinakis and Ms Anthie Sidiropoulos along with GCM Treasurer Associate Professor Marinis Pirpiris.

This funding acknowledges the integrality of the Greek community to the thriving multiculturalism in Victoria and will allow for the expansion of Greek Community of Melbourne’s cultural, educational and community programs as the nation emerges from the pandemic.

KEY POINTS:
An Albanese Labor Government will deliver $1.8m for an expansion of the Greek Centre Hub program.
Announced on Wednesday, this funding will see an upgrade in amenities and facilities at five key Greek community locations across Melbourne, including St Demetrios in Windsor and St Eleftherios in Brunswick if an Albanese Labor government is elected.
This funding acknowledges the integrality of the Greek community to the thriving multiculturalism in Victoria and will allow for the expansion of Greek Community of Melbourne’s cultural, educational and community programs as the nation emerges from the pandemic.

The key elements of the project will see upgrades in amenities and facilities at five key Greek Community locations across Melbourne, including at the historic Evangelismos site in East Melbourne, the community halls at St Eleftherios in Brunswick and St George in Thornbury, the community house in Leeds Street Footscray and at the community hall at St Demetrios in Windsor if a Labor government is elected in the federal election this coming weekend.

The support of an Albanese Labor Government to fund the project will assist in delivering suitable facilities from which the GCM’s main cultural, educational and community programs can run in conjunction with its CBD established programs.

Richard Marles MP, Deputy Leader of the Australian Labor Party said of the funding: “This is an exciting announcement from Labor for one of Melbourne’s most vibrant local communities. Labor is committed to supporting communities which give back so much life and makeup of Melbourne’s rich culture. This commitment from Labor once again echoes our commitment for a better future for all.”

Andrew Giles MP, Shadow Minister for Multicultural Affairs who was onsite in Windsor to deliver the good news to the GCM executive members said, “Michelle Ananda-Rajah and the team that Anthony Albanese leads have been listening to Melbourne’s thriving Greek community, and understand how important the upgrade of these Hubs are to keeping culture alive.   This announcement is one way that we can deliver a better future for culturally and linguistically diverse Australians in Melbourne.”

Bill Shorten MP, Shadow Minister for the NDIS who was also onsite in Windsor said: “The Greek Community is at the heart of Melbourne’s success as one of the world’s great, vibrant multicultural cities. These community hubs played a vital role in the fight against COVID and will go on to provide fantastic cultural, educational and community programs.”

Greek centre
From L to R: GCM Vice President Dr Jim Bossinakis; Treasurer Associate Professor Marinis Pirpiris; Dr Michelle Ananda-Rajah; Labor Candidate for Higgins, Andrew Giles MP; GCM President, Bill Papastergiadis; Shadow Minister for the NDIS, Bill Shorten MP, and GCM Vice President Ms Anthie Sidiropoulos

Local candidate for Higgins Dr Michelle Ananda-Rajah said: “Our local community is such an important part of Melbourne’s thriving Greek community. An Albanese Labor government will make sure that the community is able to extend their integral educational and cultural work for years to come.”

The GCM President Bill Papastergiadis was delighted with the support saying: “I thank the Labor Party for its continued support of the Greek Community and our initiatives.  The Labor party has a long history of supporting the GCM who in turn has managed to turn that support into tangible and exciting projects for the benefit of not only Greek Melbourne, but the community as a whole

“This latest announcement of support gives us the opportunity to extend our outreach and programs throughout greater Melbourne by turning our community spaces into modern facilities that allow us to present programs for a broad demographic in modern, safe and accessible spaces.

“At a difficult time when COVID hit hard, the GCM’s community halls in Thornbury, Brunswick and Windsor were turned into vaccine distribution ‘hubs’ in a program run by both the State and Federal Governments.  The need for our community to come together was stronger than ever before.

“This funding by the Labor Government ensures that the GCM will add to the foundation of these Community spaces to not only enhance their ability to deliver the activity we plan to offer, but also for them to become real hubs of connectivity for the local community.

“We are looking forward to making these spaces a better place for all of us to connect in.”

Photos by Mark Avelino

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