Speech – Sneška Quaedvlieg-Mihailović – Elliniki Etairia 45th anniversary

Speech delivered by Sneška Quaedvlieg-Mihailović, Secretary General of EUROPA NOSTRA on the occasion of the 45th anniversary of Member Organisation Elliniki Etairia.

Athens, 30 May 2017

Dear Lydia Carras,

Dear Costa Carras,

Dear Minister of Culture, Lydia Koniordou,

Dear Colleagues & Friends,

What a joy to be tonight with you in Plaka!

Europa Nostra is a great European family of people and organisation who care for Europe’s culture, history and environment. Like in every family, when one member celebrates an important birthday, we have to celebrate together.

Tonight, let me extend to you all the warmest congratulations from your EUROPA NOSTRA FAMILY on your 45th anniversary. 45 years of outstanding dedication for cultural heritage not only in Greece but also in Europe.

You are one of our oldest and I may add – dearest – member organisations and country representations. And you are certainly one of the most active and most creative one!

EUROPE is at the crossroads. Today, more than ever, Europe and we the Europeans, need to invest in activities which bring people together, activities with a positive message, activities which bring hope and inspiration to the new generations, activities which speak to the hearts and minds of people. Our Culture and our shared cultural heritage are precisely such causes which require much stronger recognition and support by the European, national and local leaders and institutions.

Next year the European Union Institutions, Member States and we – the civil society – will organise together a European Year of Cultural Heritage. This is an opportunity not to be missed to make our citizens discover the meaning and beauty of Our Europe through the care for our amazingly rich cultural heritage.

I invite Elliniki Etairia to contribute to this year with audacity and imagination, together with other members of the Europa Nostra family. Since I have arrived in Athens, we have developed lots of ideas and some dreams for this Year. I am strongly convinced that together we shall be able to realize at least some of them!

Special greetings to the Greek Minister of Culture, Lydia Koniordou. Thank you for being with us tonight.

And thank you for being one of us at the Council of Ministers of the European Union. Let us work together to finally put culture where it really belongs – at the very heart of the European project!

All this cannot be achieved without generous donors and dedicated volunteers to which I also wish to pay tribute tonight. And it cannot be achieved without the support of public opinion, and for this we need engaged communicators and media professionals!

It is therefore my honour to present, on behalf of Elliniki Etairia and on behalf of Europa Nostra, all our gratitude to the following 3 Greek journalists:

Margarita Pournara
Margarita writes for Kathimerini on heritage and the arts.
I have had the pleasure of meeting several times, especially during and after our 50th Anniversary Congress held here in Athens in 2013.
She has covered many times heritage issues not only with regard to Greece but Europe as a whole.
Efharistopoli Margarita!

Louli Stavroyanni
Louli writes for the daily newspaper Avgi on environmental issues and has been a great supporter and ally of Elliniki Etairia for many years.

Hara Tzanavara
Hara writes for the daily newspaper Efimerida Ton Syntakton on a variety of environmental and cultural issues. She has been on Elliniki Etairia’s side in many battles for the protection of environmental quality.

Thank you.

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