The fires that tore through Greece, at the end of the summer 2007, cost in human lives and burned thousands of acres of land and hundreds of houses. It destroyed one of the most beautiful sites of Greece, forced thousands of citizens to abandon their villages and homes, and threatened archaeological sites such as Ancient Olympia.
No one could stay emotionally detached from people who lost their relatives; from the elderly and children who stared at the ashes in tears without being able to imagine where they would sleep from then on, how they could be protected from sun, cold and rain; from the parents in despair, who were wondering how that they would raise their children in this deserted place.
Fortunately, in this gloomy atmosphere of pain and despair, these people realised that they are not alone. From all over Greece, fellow people hurried to support the fire stricken ones, with any means they had. Thus, along with the first plants in these areas, hope started to grow again.
The President of the “Foundation for the Child and the Family”, Mrs. Marianna V. Vardinoyannis was of first ones who rushed to be by the side of the fire victims, and along with her husband, Mr. Vardis J. Vardinoyannis, “adopted” the village called Makistos, which was completely destroyed by the fire. The village is located in the West Peloponnese, in the Prefecture of Ilia, between the town of Zacharo and Ancient Olympia. Mr. and Mrs. Vardinoyannis committed themselves to reconstruct the whole village.
Mrs. Vardinoyannis visited Makistos and the surrounding area and met the people who are living there. She gave them courage and ensured them that they can count on her and her husband. She listened to the problems of their everyday life, what they had, what they lost and what they expect. On this occasion, she also met the General-Secretary of the Western Greek Region, Mr. Spyros Spyridon, as well as the Mayor of Zacharo, Mr. Pantazis Chronopoulos and she assured them that the 68 fire-stricken houses of Makistos will shortly be revived!