The first formal visit to Canada by Stefanos Tamvakis, as the new World Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE) President, was successfully concluded on Tuesday, October 23, 2007. During his five-day stay in Canada, the SAE President, accompanied by his wife Artemis Gerontaki-Tamvaki, visited the cities of Montreal and Toronto.
In Montreal, he held meetings with the boards of the Greek Communities in Montreal and Laval as well as with the boards of the National and Provincial Hellenic Canadian Congress and was briefed on all issues concerning the Greeks living in the province of Quebec. He visited the “P.K. Salamis” Shelter for the Elderly, the General Consulate of Greece in Montreal and the Greek schools “Socrates” and “Demosthenes”
where he talked with the students and was briefed on the needs and problems of Greekspeaking education in Canada. He was received at the City Hall by Deputy Mayor of Montreal Marcel Tremblay in a friendly and cordial atmosphere and had the opportunity to meet with city councilors of Greek descent. The visit to Montreal was concluded with a meeting open for the public held at the Community Center where he
briefed all those present on SAE’s actions and work.
In Toronto, he had constructive meetings with the boards of the Toronto Greek Community, PSEKA Canada, the Hellenic Home for the Aged, and the SAE-Canada Region Coordinating Council, while he also met with representatives of Greekspeaking mass media. Tamvakis visited His Eminence Metropolitan Sotirios of
Toronto and toured the Holy Metropolis main offices and the Orthodox Theological Academy. He visited the General Consulate of Greece in Toronto and attended the annual Dinner of the Holy Metropolis National Philoptochos Society and an event hosted by the “Vergina” Pieria Prefecture Association.
On Monday, October 22, 2007 he attended the formal inauguration of the new SAE offices held in the presence of SAE Canada Regional Coordinator Costas Menegakis, the SAE-Canada Coordinating Council members and many formal guests.
The blessing ceremony was performed by Metropolitan Sotirios of Toronto while among those present in the event were Greece’s Consul General to Toronto Efthimios Efthimiadis, National Hellenic Canadian Congress President Dimitrios Manolakos, PSEKA/Canada President Dinos Sophocleous, Toronto Cypriot Community President Adonis Physentzou, Ontario Hellenic Canadian Federation President Costas Pappas and Hellenic Cultural Heritage Institute President Ioannis Sotos. Among those attending the inauguration of the new offices were presidents of ethnic identity federations and associations and heads of major Greek community organizations. In a festive atmosphere they assured the president of SAE that they will support the new
SAE-Canada Regional Coordinator and wished him success to his task.
Tamvakis stated that he leaves Canada richer, filled with pleasant experiences and important knowledge and with many more friends. For him and his wife it was a very important trip during which he was given the opportunity to become better acquainted with the Greek community of Canada and present the new SAE-Canada
Region as well as SAE’s vision and actions.
We wish to thank the SAE President and his wife for their visit for it was truly our honor and pleasure to have them with us.
Canada Region Coordinator