I am here with an amazing team of young Greek Americans who have arrived in Athens to report on how Greeks are addressing the many challenges they face today.
At the early stages of their careers in journalism, communications and different aspects of public affairs, these young people are here to launch an ambitious experiment — first to ask questions, and listen to the voices of those individuals in government, in business, and throughout society who are offering solutions and proposing new ideas — and then invite a global audience into a continuing discussion about these efforts to “reinvent Greece.”
The best way for me to explain the reason for this project is by taking you directly to the team’s third day in Athens, when some of our reporters covered an event called “I am Leaving: The Dilemma of a Generation” hosted by Intelligence Squared Greece.
The debate was about issues and decisions affecting young Greek students and professionals, but it made us also think about ourselves and how we related to this issue. As first, second or third-generation Greek-Americans who grew up in the U.S., who see the country of our extended families, our friends and our childhood summers in such a difficult and uncertain time, we want to help give back, particularly by leveraging our professional skills and interests as best we can. Of course, we also want to gain something: we want to experience Greece in a way that helps us both connect with our heritage and grow as young professionals with global perspectives.
We ask ourselves: how can we help our peers, professional counterparts and friends who are trying to find and implement solutions to Greece’s challenges?
This project is our answer.
This project was founded first and foremost on an effort to ask, listen and understand. Whatever we build together moving forward can only be built on this foundation of understanding and communication.
Whether you are Greek, Greek-American, a part of the larger Greek diaspora around the world, or just a friend of Greece, we invite you, and urge you, to join us.
— Aphrodite Bouikidis, Athens Launch Director and young professional