Gardeners (Per’volarides) of Thessaloniki, Greece

Alert - What do we need

We need 30-50 euros/week for transportation costs for distributing the fish and other products in the families we support. This amount of money is raised by donators so we keep this project running.

There are extra needs that emerge from the everyday difficulties that our citizens (and us of course) face. Very frequently we have to raise some money to support families that suffer from electricity power cut off due to unpaid debts on the electricity company. The same happens with water bills. So, we need to react on emergency needs and raise some money from our circle of supporters to donate to some families for paying off emergency bills.

We need one deep freezer to put the fresh fish until we distribute them. Temperatures in Greece can get pretty high.

We need to expand our climax of the bee-keeping project. Any help (donations in bee hives, equipment, money) would be valuable to us.

Who we are

“Gardeners” is a self-sufficiency group located in Thessaloniki, Greece.

“Gardeners” currently produce seasonal groceries, honey, yoghurt, cheese, olive oil, olives, eggs, tomato sauce, marmalade.

We are a group of unemployed people who decided to take the situation at out hands, thus trying to cover our own needs in basic products and help others also.

We cultivate seasonal groceries in a small piece of urban land using local seeds and organic farming techniques. We produce our own compost and use manure taken from our own sheeps and goats.

Two of our members practice bee-keeping. But we do not want to keep the know-how for our selves, but rather spread it. So, we decided to train another memeber in the art of bee-keeping. This action could not be realized without practical help from members of the greek community of Frankfurt who donated us the money to buy basic bee-keeping equipment and also some money to buy a big used refrigerator to start cheese maturation.

Each November-December we collect, together with other unemployed people, olives from abandoned or donated olive trees in the east part of Thessaloniki.

Next to the urban land is our solidarity node: We provide basic food supplies to 30 families per month (rice, flour, beans, salt, pasta, tomato sauce, marmalade, milk etc). These products come from fellow citizens’ donations.  We have come to an agreement with people from the fish market, thus getting free fresh fish (about 200 kilos every time) from the fish market each week.

We believe that Greece is like a house on fire. In a house that is on fire you have to do two things: First, to put out the fire. Second, to build the house again. We should treat Greece the same way: First, feed our people and second, build the ruined economy with projects of social/solidarity economy.

We try to mobilize the people we support. Let’s give an example: When we get a quantity of free tomatoes or fruits, we organize a “production line” of tomato sauce/fruit marmalade with the people we support. When the action is over, these people leave with the products they produced, but also with a sense that they are useful and productive. And this is the most serious achievement of our group. Last time we did such action, we produced 100 kilos of marmalade for the refugee camp in Eidomeni.

With your support we will be able to help more people and expand our social/solidarity economy projects. We want to give the message that with unity/collaboration/fight we can change ourselves and the world!

This is an interview we had in the National Broadcasting Television, embedded on the griechenlandsoli site: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wk4sCfbbDtw

 

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