Hellenic Initiative Athens car

The Hellenic Initiative (THI) has made a combined gift of $60,000 to the Jewish Communities of Athens and Thessaloniki in honour of Albert Bourla, Chairman and CEO of Pfizer. THI honoured Dr Bourla, born into the Thessaloniki Jewish Community, at its 10th Anniversary Gala celebration on December 3, 2022, at which the gift was announced. Bourla was honoured for his achievements and his support of Greece personally and through Pfizer’s significant investments in the country.

Founded in 2012, THI is a global non-profit organization that brings together Diaspora Greeks and Philhellenes to invest in Greece today through programs focused on economic development and crisis relief. Since its founding, THI has invested over $20 million in Greece.

THI’s gift was used to purchase two service vehicles, one for each of the Jewish Community Centers in Athens and Thessaloniki. The social services teams will use the cars to make a home, nursing home, hospital and psychiatric clinic visits to members in need. The vehicles will also escort community members living alone, many elderly, to visit their doctors, hospitals, public institutions, and loved ones at their homes or cemeteries.

THI CAR Thessaloniki

The staff will also use the cars to deliver groceries, medicine and other essential goods to its needy community members, assisting them to access social services and participate in social activities.

Dimitri Georgakopoulos, a THI Board Member who was in attendance at the March 15 dedication of the gift to the Athens Community Center, stated, ”THI’s grants will enable the two Communities to access and provide services to their most vulnerable members in a more efficient way. We could not be more pleased to help make that happen.” Taly Muir, the Director of the Jewish Community Center of Athens, called the gifts a “dream come true.” The President of the Jewish Community of Thessaloniki, David Saltiel, expressed the Community’s gratitude “for the generous gesture of The Hellenic Initiative”, which not only contributes to the work of the Community but “supports Jewish life in Thessaloniki.” The Community’s Executive Director, Victor Nar, said, “The Hellenic Initiative actively contributes to the work of the Jewish Community of Thessaloniki and in particular, to the implementation of programs to support Holocaust survivors and its members in need of assistance.”