Wrapping up his Dublin visit, Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister Terrence Quick visited the Greek Diaspora Community and met with the Executive Boards and members of the Dublin-based diasporic organizations. The community’s school has an enrollment of more than 50 children, while other classes are being developed in Irish cities where Greeks who have immigrated mainly during the brain drain live. The Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister was welcomed by the Ireland Hellenic Community President, Stella Xenopoulou, Dublin Greek-Orthodox Community President, Thomai Kakouli-Duarte, and School Community’s Board.
Leaving for London, the Deputy Minister noted: “We are talking about a very special, dynamic, enviable diasporic community here, with great harmony among its members. Greeks living here for several decades, along with Greeks of the new immigration wave and their children, have found in Ireland a hospitable home and good working conditions in their various professions.”
The issues raised by Ireland’s Greek diasporic community (with most of them living in Dublin) include:
-Ministry of Education commitment to replace teacher whose term is ending, so that the new school year begins in autumn of 2018 without problems.
-Explore sending a second teacher for areas in Ireland where schools (mostly Primary schools) are being built for Greek students who are children of first generation immigrants.
-Request the Archbishop of Thyateira and Great Britain for the provision of a Priest, given that Father Thomas in the Annunciation of the Virgin Mary church, the only Greek Orthodox Church in Dublin, may retire.
-Explore contributions to the Community’s cultural initiatives to promote Greek letters and arts, such as translating literary or musical works in Gaelic.
The issue of space for the Greek school being limited was also raised, noting how diasporic institutions are being deprived of even the conditions to host basic offices. Mr Quick informed the Greek people that he had a special meeting on the subject with the Mayor of Dublin, Micheal Mac Donncha, who promised that his staff, in cooperation with the Greek Community of Ireland, would try to find a an appropriate building, despite the Irish capital’s huge housing problem. Given the opportunity, the Deputy Minister thanked Mr. Mac Donncha for holding on to the name “Greek Language Road” for a street which is close to the city’s Cathedral; the name represents the legacy of the first Greeks to move to Dublin, who settled in the area.
Ms Katia Georgiou, Ambassador of Greece to Dublin was present in all of the Deputy Minister’s meetings; the Ambassador of Cyprus, Mr. Kostas Papadimas, attended all meetings with the diaspora.