A time to remember

The Organising Committee of the Cypriot Struggle (Συντονιστική Επιτροπή Κυπριακού Αγώνα) has organised a series of activities this July again, for the 45th time, to remember their own and remind the big world powers that this is 2019 and the plight of Cyprus is still with us, still unsolved.

Thessaloniki Association was represented at some of these activities, by the Vice-President, Mr Iakovos Garivaldis OAM.

Continue reading “A time to remember”

Πρωτοχρονιάτικο Ρεβεγιόν 2016-17

Οι Θεσσαλονικείς όπως κάθε χρονιά διοργάνωσαν και αυτό το Δεκέμβριο 2016 το Πρωτοχρονιάτικο Ρεβεγιόν, το οποίο όπως θα δείτε και από τις φωτογραφίες είχε επιτυχία.

Περί τους ογδόντα Θεσσαλονικείς και μη που παρευρέθηκαν έφαγαν το πλούσιο δείπνο και έκοψαν τη Βασιλόπιτα. Τώρα ποιος κέρδισε το φλουρί δεν το λέμε… Ας το αφήσουμε μυστικό μέχρι την επόμενη φορά, κι όποιος παρευρεθεί θα το μάθει πρώτο χέρι.

2016-2017 Revegion

Order of Australia Medal

On 26th January 2015 (Australia Day) the Australian Government announced the Order of Australian Medal awards for selected members of different communities in Australia who have contributed greatly to the wider Australian community.

The nomination and selection process is independent of Government with nomination administration being conducted by the Honours Secretariat of the Governor-General’s staff and selection being made by the independent Council of The Order of Australia. For more information please follow this link. For the full list of people who received the Order of Australia Medal please visit this page.

This year five members of the Greek Community of Victoria have been awarded, alongside of them the President of Thessaloniki Association “The White Tower”. We’re proud of the contribution Thessaloniki Association has made to the Greek Community in general and are happy that our president Mr Paul Mavroudis OAM received it. This award also honors the contribution the whole Mavroudis family has made over the years with sacrifice of their family time for Mr Mavroudis OAM to be present to a large number of community events.

On the same day Thessaloniki Association Committee members have organised a function to celebrate the Order of Australia Medal to Mr Mavroudis at the club rooms and invited several prominent guests to participate.

One of these guests was the Hon. Minister Jenny Mikakos who was awarded Honorary Membership by Thessaloniki Association for her tremendous contribution to the Association of the so many years. We thank Jenny from the bottom of our hearts and wish her all the best for her important role in Parliament.

Here are some of the photos from the event on January 26, 2015.

Mr Paul Mavroudis offers the Honorary Membership to the Minister Hon Jenny Mikakos. In the background members of the Committee of Thessaloniki Association.
Mr Paul Mavroudis offers the Honorary Membership to the Minister Hon Jenny Mikakos. In the background members of the Committee of Thessaloniki Association.

Mr & Mrs Mavroudis family with their two sons, their daughters-in-law and grandchildren
Mr & Mrs Mavroudis family with their two sons, their daughters-in-law and grandchildren

Participants at the special event including committee members, Mr Chin Tan, Hon Jenny Mikakos, Hon Lee tarlamis, Jane Sharwood from the City of Melbourne and the Mavroudis family
Participants at the special event including Standing: Committee members Christina Despoteri & Iakovos Garivaldis, Mr Chin Tan (VMC Chair), Hon Maria Vamvakinou, Hon Jenny Mikakos, Hon Lee tarlamis, Jane Sharwood from the City of Melbourne and Sitting: the Mavroudis family

Επίσκεψη Μπουτάρη στην Ένωση

Στις 21 Νοεμβρίου 2014 και ώρα 1:00μ.μ., με ευκαιρία την επίσκεψη του στη Μελβούρνη, ο Δήμαρχος Θεσσαλονίκης κύριος Γιάννης Μπουτάρης συνοδευόμενος από το επιτελείο του, επισκέφτηκε το κτίριο της Ένωσης Θεσσαλονικέων και γευμάτισε με τα μέλη του Δ.Σ. καθώς και τον Πρέσβη της Ελλάδας στην Αυστραλία κύριο Χ. Δαφαράνο, την Πρόξενο στη Μελβούρνη κ. Χ. Σημαντιράκη και άλλους επισήμους. Το γεύμα διοργάνωσε η Ένωση Θεσσαλονικέων “ο Λευκός Πύργος”. Στους τοίχους φαίνονται τα έργα των ζωγράφων της Ένωσης που εκθέσαμε από τις 9 Νοεμβρίου 2014.

Μερικές από τις φωτογραφίες της συνεύρεσης αυτής στο High Street, Northcote

On November 21st, 2014 and about 1.00pm the Mayor of Thessaloniki has visited the club rooms of Thessaloniki Association in Northcote, accompanied by his colleagues. With him also arrived the Ambassador to Greece Mr Harris Dafaranos with his wife Eva and the Consul General to Melbourne Mrs Ch. Simantirakis. Below you will find some of the photos from this luncheon organised by Thessaloniki Association.

Episkepsi Boutari

“Jews of Thessaloniki” Reception

Ένωση Θεσσαλονικέων «Ο Λευκός Πύργος» Μελβούρνης

16 Σεπτεμβρίου 2014

Η Ένωση Θεσσαλονικέων Μελβούρνης ξεκίνησε τη σειρά εκδηλώσεών της, εορτάζοντας τα 30 Χρόνια αδελφοποίησης της μακρινής από τη Ελλάδα Μελβούρνης με τη Θεσσαλονίκη. Στη Μελβούρνη ζουν και διαπρέπουν τριακόσιες και πλέον χιλιάδες Ελληνισμού. Εδώ θα συγκεντρωθούν οι ομογενείς το Νοέμβριο με το κάλεσμα της Ένωσης Θεσσαλονικέων.

Στη Βουλή της πολιτείας της Βικτώρια έγινε η πρώτη εκδήλωση στην Αγγλική που είχε τίτλο « Οι Εβραίοι της Θεσσαλονίκης» όπου διάφοροι πολιτικοί, αρχηγοί οργανώσεων και επιχειρήσεων έδωσαν το παρών και μίλησαν για τη σημαντική ιστορία των Εβραίων στη Θεσσαλονίκη και των δεινών που υπέστησαν από τους Ναζί κατά τον Β’ Παγκόσμιο πόλεμο.

Η συμμετοχή στην εκδήλωση ήταν μόνον με πρόσκληση και την παρακολούθησαν πέραν των δώδεκα πολιτικών της πολιτείας της Βικτώρια. Οι ομιλητές έθιξαν τα παθήματα των Ισραηλιτών κατά την περίοδο της Γερμανικής κατοχής και όχι μόνον.

Η εκδήλωση συνοδεύτηκε από μουσική Θεοδωράκη με το «Άσμα Ασμάτων» και της μεγάλης τραγουδήστριας Μαρινέλας. Οι κύριοι ομιλητές ήταν η Dr Helen Light AM, πρώην διευθύντρια του Μουσείου των Εβραίων της Μελβούρνης, και η κυρία Εύα Δαφαράνου, σύζυγος του Πρέσβη της Ελλάδας στη Βικτώρια. Επίσης απαγγέλθηκαν στο κοινό μεταφρασμένα ποιήματα της εποχής στην Αγγλική από Έλληνες λογοτέχνες.

Ήταν μια σεμνή εκδήλωση που άγγιξε με σοβαρότητα και σαφήνεια την ιστορία της πόλης της Θεσσαλονίκης και τις δημιουργίες της τέχνης των συγγραφέων της.

Jews of Thessaloniki

Musicians from Greece
Musicians from Greece
Dr Helen Light AM
Dr Helen Light AM
Mrs T. Mavroudis, Mrs A. Garivaldis, Mrs E. Dafaranos (main speaker)
Mrs T. Mavroudis, Mrs A. Garivaldis, Mrs E. Dafaranos (main speaker)
Crowd at the gathering
Crowd at the gathering
Mrs Nina Bassat and Dr Helen Light
Mrs Nina Bassat and Dr Helen Light
Hon Matthew Guy, Minister for Planning
Hon Matthew Guy, Minister for Planning
Hon Maria Vamvakinou, Federal Member of Parliament
Hon Maria Vamvakinou, Federal Member of Parliament
Eyvah Dafaranos, keynote speaker
Eyvah Dafaranos, keynote speaker
Message from the Hon Martin Foley MP:
“The Thessaloniki Association and the Jewish Community of Victoria are to be congratulated for their work over the last few years in marking this awful event
The Facist invasion of Greece, the occupation and the Holocaust in Greece are still relevant issues today both here and in Greece as we see the rise of new racist movements. Your work is to be supported on this basis alone – let alone the importance of ensuring the memory of those murdered is honoured.”

Function in the Victorian Parliament by invitation only


A Cocktail Reception in the Victorian Parliament, Queens Hall, to commemorate the history of the Jewish people in Thessaloniki during WW II.

Main speakers on the day –

Eyvah T. Dafaranos

eyvahBorn in Athens, Eyvah began classical ballet at the age of seven and concluded her classical studies. She studied Middle Eastern and International Relations at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. She speaks fluently English, Italian, Hebrew and Arabic.

Since 1982, she has been residing extensively in Saudi Arabia, Israel, Sweden, South Africa, India and West Africa, joining her diplomat husband; while residing in these countries she interacted with national cultural organizations as well as with Greek Diaspora institutions and co-produced inter-cultural events aiming at promoting the arts and understanding, believing strongly in cultural diplomacy through which states and civil societies can be brought together and coexist in peace.

Eyvah has had a diversified international activity as theatrical producer, actress, poet, newspaper columnist, radio and television presenter, P.R. consultant and art-curator.

  • In Israel, (1987-1990) she was instrumental in instituting a Greek language school in Jerusalem.
  • In Sweden, (1990-1993) she organised International Bazaars, as well as a Greek National Dances Seminar.
  • In South Africa, (1996-1999) she cooperated culturally with the Soweto and Alexandra, Johannesburg Municipalities, as well as with Nelson Mandela’s Children’s Foundation. She also established an “Eyvah T. Dafaranos Annual Award for Theatrical Performance”.
  • In India, (1999-2002) she was the founder and President of the NGO ‘World Heritage Society for Performing Arts’ (WHSPAS). This was an effort to enhance the fusion between the Western and Indian artistic styles through promoting studies of classical ballet as well as Opera, Theatre, Poetry and other forms of performing arts from all over the world, for under privileged children.
  • In July 2002 Eyvah published her first book of poetry entitled ‘Maharani’s Letters’. A leading Indian composer, Johar Ali Khan, put into music Maharani’s Letters with tremendous success.
  • In Nigeria, (2005-2009) Eyvah cooperated with his Excellency the Ambassador, Haris Dafaranos, her husband, in various cultural projects promoting the Hellenic artistic heritage, its fusion with the contemporary African world of the arts as well as organising photographic exhibitions on Greece and Nigeria and presenting a kaleidoscope of Nigerian national costumes.

Her second book, under the title ‘Humans and Statues’, is going to be printed shortly. In Australia, since November 2012, Eyvah has had so far the opportunity to cultivate exhibitions in Canberra, Sydney and Melbourne, as well as to lecture in Sydney.

Dr Helen Light AM

helenHelen Light AM was inaugural Director of the Jewish Museum of Australia having worked there from 1983 – 2010. She now works as a consultant in museums, exhibitions and with collections, specifically with multicultural heritage.

She is currently working on a project with the Australian Multicultural Foundation to help ethnic community groups preserve their material history of migration and settlement.

Helen is an Executive Member of the Jewish Community Council of Victoria (JCCV); and on the Boards of the Ethnic Community Council of Victoria, the Jewish Christian Muslim Association and the Faith Communities Council of Victoria.