The SAE Central and South America Region announced the results of the literary competition for young writers titled “The first Greek in my family”.
In an event held at the SAE office in Santiago on January 2, 2008, Regional Coordinator Nikiforos Nikolaidis pointed out that “the competition was held within the framework of our effort aimed at encouraging the young to turn to their Greek roots and reunite with their country of origin through the productive process of writing”.
Two top prizes were awarded, for a Spanish-speaking and a Portuguese-speaking short story, taking under consideration the literary interest and language peculiarity. The two winning short stories are: Amor y familia by Paola Yanina Maria Brossy from Puerto Madryn, Argentina written in Spanish and A Promessa by Nikolle Koutsoukos Amadori from Curitiba, Brazil written in Portuguese.
The competition jury has also awarded three honorary distinctions to the short stories: Una mulher de arte e fé by Augusto Cesar Vassilopoulos, Brazil, Nunca es tarde para descubrir nuestras raíces by Eliaνa Laura Frangias Vitali, Argentina and Un soldado italiano by Mariana Dimópoulos, Argentina which won commendations.
“The young participants described the hardships faced by their eldest ancestor who was the first to migrate to Latin America”, stated Nikolaidis. “Each story is unique. Having left their country of origin behind, when Greece was tormented by harsh living conditions, the heroes described follow a different path, bringing along different stories and distinct mentalities. Originating from Crete, Katellorizo, Arcadia, Mani, Chios, Rhodes, Mitilini, Edessa, Lamia, Corfu, the heroes of the short stories managed with hard work, aching nostalgia for Greece and unbelievable persistence to make a new home for them in the land of Latin America”.
Regarding the prizes won, it was decided that in addition to an airplane ticket to Greece, including a visit to the birthplace of the “First Greek in the family”, both winners will be given a 300-euro money prize for travel expenses. Awards were also received by the two communities, members of which are the two winners.
The Regional Coordinator announced that the competition was satisfactorily received and will be repeated in 2008. This time it will be addressed to two categories of competitors:
a) under the age of 35, to give an incentive to the young to search for their roots and
b) over 35, to record life stories of a difficult and critical time in the history of modern Greece, being either autobiographies or taken down by a third person.