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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 20 August 2016
NEWS 2 THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 20 AUGUST 2016 Peter felt fortunate that he was entrusted by the board of Fronditha to develop and execute its expansion, including the provision of new services such as community care. He worked closely with the board and his senior staff to design a plan and to execute it swiftly and progressively, being vigilant to ensure that risks and threats like cost overruns were avoided and that opportunities for viable expansion were pursued with vigour and transparency. This period saw unparalleled growth in Fronditha, its resources and the people it served. Peter was the right person at the right time and place for Fronditha Care and the Greek community. His deep conviction of the need for elderly people to have choices for their care and that the care must be delivered to them in a relevant environment, language and culture were critical to the success of Fronditha. Vale Spiro Peter Gogorosis We write to farewell Spiro Peter Gogorosis and to celebrate his life and achievements, especially as the creative, compassionate chief executive officer of Fronditha Care for over 15 years. His appointment by the board of Fronditha Care in 1993 was critical to that organisation's subsequent growth to its present esteemed position. Peter graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce degree and worked initially in the late 1960s with a stockbroking firm but found the ethical practices in the financial sector did not sit well with his own moral stance. He changed his career to human services and joined the Social Welfare Department, where he worked while undertaking a postgraduate social work course, completing it in 1974, the first Greekborn social work graduate in Melbourne. In his 22 years in the public service Peter gained the respect of peers and superiors by his hard work and affinity for the work. He was progressively promoted from case worker to middle management and then to senior executive positions. He worked as regional director of Community Services Victoria in three regions. Human services is a complex area and involved working closely with the non-government sector, the community and local government to ensure accountable and efficient services. Fortunately, community development was a strong interest of Peter's. In 1987 Peter was commissioned as a director of a critical project, Statewide Service Redevelopment of Reception Services for young children at risk. This involved the closure of four institutional services and the transfer of the 200 children and 150 staff affected to new regional facilities. Peter loved the challenge to close the anachronistic institutions and to create new regional options for the at-risk children, in the process expanding his own skills. Peter became a board member of the Australian Greek Welfare Society for three years until he joined Fronditha Care as CEO. Also as a volunteer, he was a board member of the Balwyn Secondary School where his children attended. Later Peter was appointed a director of an industry-based superannuation fund. Peter loved his family, wife Tanya, children Simone and Michael and their families and his young granddaughter Alexandra but also his parents, with whom he made sure to spend special time every Saturday morning after a hectic week. He contributed to writing the history of the village of Tsamantas where his roots were and could recall with passion the grief of his grandmother Ourania calling “Spiro, Spiro ...” as he left with his family to come to Australia. He shared this memory with many migrants and his experience made him empathic with the aged clients of Fronditha. In his retirement, even as he was dealing with motor neurone disease, he often expressed his pride that the volunteers, the board and his staff had created such a community-based organisation. He valued the team culture and accountability to stakeholders - community, government and consumers. Peter had a strong value system not even the disease could shake while residing at a nursing home. He was joyful greeting people and shaking hands and always ready to dance to Greek music such as Zorba the Greek, Hasapiko or Zembetiko and he could also chant Byzantine hymns. Peter was inspired by many semi-mythical Greek stories, such as the Souliotes women who in 1803 committed suicide with their children to avoid enslavement. This episode also inspired the revolution against the Ottoman empire and ultimately the liberation of Greece. Peter often recalled in Greek this poem that the women sang: Farewell poor world Farewell sweet life And you my wretched country Farewell for ever. It was a privilege to have known and worked with such a wonderful person and we will always remember you, Spiro, with fondness and respect. George Darivakis Savas Augoustakis John Bellesis Dr Conn Constantinou George Demetriou Jim Kalodimos Joan Livingston Chris Sourlos Penni Michael DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM Pre and post-invasion Cyprus Greek Centre presents a lecture on fact-finding missions by Don Dunstan and Nick Bolkus Dr Maria Shialis will present a lecture entitled ‘Pre and Post-invasion Cyprus: Fact-finding missions by Don Dunstan and Nick Bolkus’, on Thursday 25 August at the Greek Centre, as a part of the Greek History and Culture Seminars offered by the Greek Community of Melbourne. There were two significant South Australian political figures who travelled to Cyprus on fact-finding missions during turbulent times on the island. One of these was the Honourable Don Dunstan, who travelled to Cyprus in February 1957, at the request of Australia's Cypriot Brotherhood. Dunstan's mission was to investigate the escalation of violence on the island, which had commenced in 1955, and report back to the concerned Cypriot community in Australia with a factual unbiased view. The other individual was the Honourable Nick Bolkus, who travelled to Cyprus in November 1974 as a special representative, as per the request of Clyde Cameron, the Minister for Labor and Immigration at the time. Bolkus' mission was to investigate the situation on the island after the invasion and to report back with recommendations. In her lecture, based on original research, Dr Shialis will examine the events and outcomes of Dunstan's and Bolkus' fact-finding missions in Cyprus. These events proved to be significant milestones in Australian-Cypriot relations and history, which has provided a greater understanding of these forgotten and/or undiscovered events. Dr Maria Shialis was awarded her PhD in 2015 from Flinders University. Her PhD research focussed on the settlement experiences of Greek Cypriot migrants and refugees in South Australia between 1945 and 1980. She is also a research assistant for several projects conducted by the Modern Greek Department at Flinders University, including migrant domestic servants, migration experiences through blogging, online teaching and learning, and ageing in a foreign land. Maria has presented at national and international conferences, and has published articles in various journals. When: Thursday 25 August at 7.00 pm Where: Greek Centre, Level M, 168 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne, VIC For further information contact (03) 9662 2722 or email email@example.com Case against former Agapi Care manager dropped Former accommodation manager and senior figure of the Greek-based care group AGAPI, Andreas Haralampidis, has been acquitted of all charges by the Magistrates Court of Victoria at Heidelberg. Mr Haralambidis was charged in July by the Darebin Crime Investigation Unit in Preston, in Melbourne's northern suburbs, for nine alleged counts of theft from the organisation, which are said to have occurred between July 1, 2011 and March 31, 2012, totalling $81,716.95. In a statement to Neos Kosmos, Mr Haralambidis' lawyers Dandalis & Associates have disclosed the certified extract from the Heidelberg Court, which dismisses all charges on merits of the case. The court ruling was made on 26 July 2016. In Mr Haralambidis' defence it is worth mentioning that he has always denied all the charges and proclaimed his innocence.
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