This Animal Welfare Karpathos 2021 program would not have been possible without the help of all the sponsors, local government officials, and volunteers who devoted time to its success. This type of program was the first of its kind on Karpathos island. It not only took place in three remote villages where veterinarians have never officially visited before, but it also combined spay/neuters with community outreach. The volunteers spent a significant amount of time connecting with the locals and sharing animal welfare practices with young kids who visited the temporary clinics daily. Clinics were set for the very first time in the villages of Mesochori, Aperi, and Olympos. In addition, a clinic was set up in Pigadia (city of Karpathos). The program, as expected with any new effort, faced several challenges (transportation delays from one village to another, electricity outages in remote villages, etc). In spite of the obstacles, the program was considered overall successful as it was able to raise awareness about the value of spay/neuters, while at the same time contributing to the welfare and health of the animals that came through AWK's clinics.
The volunteer students had the opportunity to gain medical knowledge while also experiencing the local culture and cuisine. Experiences included sponsored dinners, a visit to Saint Marina's church festival in Olympos, a windsurfing class, and a day trip to Saria ( the northern, isolated, and pristine part of Karpathos). An added experience to the above, was the Equidae Wellness Program which took place in Olympos village on July 17th, 2021.
Below you will see a wonderful brief video created by Mary Elle Alexander, the list of sponsors who supported the program, photos from some of the program highlights, and last but not least the names of the volunteers.
This video was directed, filmed and edited by Mary Elle Alexander.
The Animal Welfare Karpathos 2021 "Spay/Neuter & Education" campaign would not have been possible without the collaboration of the Municipality of Karpathos: Mayor John Nisyrios, Mr. Manolis Paragios (President of the City Council), and all members of the City Council who unanimously voted in favor of AWK's program. In addition, the support from the Regional Government of Karpathos (Mrs. Popi Nikolaidou) and the regional veterinarian of the South Aegean Region, Dr. Elias Economides, were instrumental in the success of the program. The issuing of the permits was overseen voluntarily by Mrs. Demetra Antonatou, who was committed to ensuring that this program met all legal standards and requirements. Last but not least, AWK would like to thank the presidents of the villages for welcoming the volunteers and supporting their efforts. Mr. George Pappas, president of Aperi, visited the volunteers daily in an effort to make sure that their needs were met and he, also, held an informal thank you ceremony during the last day in Aperi.
The major sponsor for this pilot program was Dr. Anna Katogiritis, who also designed and directed the program.
Hotel sponsors who provided free rooms for the volunteers throughout the program were: Alos Suites (Mr. Elias Makris), Althea Boutique Hotel (Mrs. Maria Loizou-Ioannidis), Calypso Bay Apartments/ Hotel (Mrs. Sevasti Makris), Konstantinos Palace (Mr. Felouzis), 7-star Hotel, Marina Lentaki (Olympos apartments).
Soft drinks were provided throughout the program to all the volunteers through a generous donation by Green Cola.
Entertainment: The student volunteers also had the opportunity to attend a one-day surfing class in Afiartis, courtesy of Meltemi Windsurfing. In addition, the students had the opportunity to visit Saria by boat- the northern part of Karpathos island and spend the day snorkeling and exploring. This trip was sponsored by individual anonymous donors and Dr. Katogiritis.
Sponsored dinners were provided by the following restaurants, local associations, and donors:
- Association of Pigadia citizens of Karpathos (Σύλλογος Πηγαδιωτών Καρπάθου) provided multiple lunch meals,
- the Vardaoulis Pharmacy sponsored dinner at the restaurant Kelaria
- the Cultural Association of Aperi - Omonoia (Εξωραϊστικός και Πολιτιστικός σύλλογος Απερίου- Ομόνοια) sponsored a dinner at the restaurant Orea Karpathos (Ωραία Κάρπαθος)
- the hotel Almira sponsored the dinner at the restaurant Vala
- Ms. Marina Lentakis sponsored the first dinner at the restaurant "Taverna Olympos" in Olympos village
- the Association of Pigadia Citizens - US - Poseidon ( Σύλλογος Πηγαδιωτών Αμερικής- Ποσειδών) sponsored a dinner
- Ms. Sophia Litou - Mrs. Koulourioti and Ms. Notara prepared multiple home-cooked lunches in Mesochori village
- Mr. Thanasis Diakos sponsored a dinner at this restaurant "Thalassa"
- Mr. Nikos Ioannidis sponsored a dinner at his restaurant "Ellinikon"
- Mrs. Maria Loizou- Ioannidis prepared and sponsored breakfast at her boutique hotel "Althea"
- Louloudis Supermarkets offered free sandwiches for a day
- Mrs. Angeliki Frangkou - Papaspyro of Life of Angels restaurant sponsored and prepared breakfast for 2 days
- Miss Theohariti Pittas sponsored a dinner in Mesochori village
- Mr. and Mrs. Mikropandemenou sponsored lunch for a day
- Dr. Anna Katogiritis and Dr. Thomas Cotrone sponsored multiple dinners throughout the program
- the "Association of Voladiotes of Athens- Panagia I Plagia" (Σύλλογος Βωλαδιωτών Αθήνας "Παναγία η Πλαγιά") sponsored the dinner at Ciao restaurant
- Kaniski pastry store provided lunch for one day
- Athanasiou bakery provided Karpathian baked goods for one day
- Mrs. Evdoxia Litou provided home-cooked breakfast for one day
Photo Highlights of the Program