Soup Kitchens Feed More Greeks Every Day

July 28, 2012

Unlocking Word Meanings
Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

1. local (n.) 
[loh-kuhl] – a person from a particular locality or area
Example: The locals from the neighboring city helped in the government’s tree planting program.

2. facility (n.) [fuh-sil-i-tee] – a place that is built for a certain use
Example: The government provides facilities to get free meals for homeless people.

3. afford (v.) [uh-fawrd, uh-fohrd] – to be able to pay for something; to have the money for something
Example: Her family can afford to buy expensive cars.

4. hand out (phrasal verb) [hand out] – to distribute
Example: Members of the charity handed out gifts to the children.

5. solidarity (n.) [sol-i-dar-i-tee] – unity among people with same goal or interest
Example: People showed their solidarity by helping victims of the disaster.

Read the text below.
As economic recession continues in Greece, soup kitchens are serving free food not only to the homeless, but also to locals who are not able to provide food for themselves.

One of the facilities in Athens is run by George Apostolopolos and a team of volunteers. The soup kitchen is funded by the government, but Apostolopolos says there is no certainty if the funds will still be enough in the future.

More Athenians, especially older people, are coming to the soup kitchen every day. Christos, one of the kitchen soup users, says this is the most difficult situation he has ever seen in Greece. His life changed when his parents died, after which he experienced a car accident. He lost his job, and now he is depending on soup kitchens for meals.

Maria, who also frequently visits the soup kitchen, used to run a clothes shop, but lost her job due to the weak economy. She also lost her home because she could no longer afford the 450-euro rent.

The soup kitchens may be very helpful for now, but the lines of people who need food are getting longer. Fortunately, there are still those who are willing to help. With support from the government, farmers from the city of Crete recently handed out 27 tons of eggplant, peppers, tomatoes and other vegetables for free.

Nikos Saprovalakis, who handed out food at Central Athens park, said Greeks may be facing hard times, but they somehow survive by showing their solidarity with one another.

Viewpoint Discussion
Enjoy a discussion with your tutor. 

Discussion A

·         How has the economic recession affected your country?
·         What are some of the things that citizens in your country do to help each other at times of national crisis?

Discussion B

·         Why do you think people volunteer to help others?
·         Have you ever joined a volunteer program before? If not, what volunteer program would you be interested in joining?


July 28, 2012