Through Hellenic Hearts, many people and institutions can receive financial aid and support on various fronts, including emergency financial assistance, food, housing, funerals, scholarships, volunteer programs, educational guidance and support for undergraduate and graduate students. Every effort is made to identify, assist and/or pay within 48 hours of emergencies. Hellenic Hearts is able to connect with those in need with the help of local priests, Philoptochos, and many Hellenic organizations such as the Pontian Society.
Due to Covid, they were delayed in fundraising for 2 years, but that didn’t stop them from continuing to provide emergency assistance and mentorship via Zoom. After being suspended for 2 years, Hellenic Hearts held its fourth annual golf and gala event on June 6, 2022 and presented its first Philotimo award. They intend to continue the golf and gala events each year in hopes of raising funds to help as many people and institutions in need as possible. Their mission is to reach out and continue to help those involved in emergency situations and to try to make a difference in our youth and in the Greek and Greek American community as a whole. The next Hellenic Hearts Gala event is scheduled for June 4, 2023 at Ellis Preserve in Newtown Square and June 5, 2023 at Hellenic Golf at Rolling Green Golf Club.
Some of the programs supported this year with the estimated $100,000 raised are Hellenic College/Holy Cross, Educational Guidance Program, Hellenic University of Philadelphia Scholarship Program, GOARCH Ukraine Relief Fund and the donation of scholarships to the Washington OXI Foundation. All remaining proceeds will be used to fund emergency relief for the year. They plan to fund additional programs next year with the Hellenic National Society and a few other worthy organizations.
Immediate aid will be distributed as follows:
a. $10,000 to Hellenic College/Holy Cross each year for assistance to married seminarians without tuition. (5-year commitment $50,000);
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b. $20,000 in the Hellenic Hearts Education referral program;
vs. $5,000 in the Hellenic University of Philadelphia Scholars Program;
D. Donation of $5,000 to the Archdiocesan Relief Fund of Ukraine established by Archbishop Elpidophoros to help orphanages and our fellow Orthodox people suffering there;
e. $2,000 scholarship to the Washington OXI Day Foundation hosted by Mike Manatos ($10,000 commitment over 5 years)
During the event, the first Philotimo prize was awarded to Mr. Mike Manatos. When asked how the recipient of the Philotimo award was chosen, Mr. Aivazoglou couldn’t express enough that Mike Manatos (who also runs the OXI Day Foundation) was the obvious choice for the first recipient of this award. “Mr. Mantos fits our belief in making a difference.” His dedication to the Greek national and Greek-American community is unwavering. I have known Mike for years and anyone who knows him knows what a caring person he is.
Mr. Manatos was also able to give us a statement regarding his price. “It was a huge honor for me and my family to receive Hellenic Heart’s first annual Philotimo Award and to recognize the remarkable work of this young non-profit organization. Philotimo is the raison d’être of this organization, its board of directors and its supporters. Providing financial assistance to ailing Greek-Americans and other support and career education for young Greek-Americans is a true Philotimo that our national community should applaud, support and emulate,” said Mike Manatos, President of Manatos & Manatos.
There are 13 generations of priests in Mr. Aivazogou’s family. He was raised learning to help those in need and to care about others. He was mainly influenced by his mother who always shared food and provided shelter for those in need, it was inevitable that he would follow in their philanthropic footsteps. His daughter Rayna McCarthy, Director of Communications and Legal Assistant at Hellenic Hearts, who is also involved in student mentoring and guidance, said: “Words cannot describe my gratitude, I’m so excited that we can continue. to give back through the organization. ”
Mr. Aivazoglou wishes to thank Tim Vlassopoulos for all his efforts in the production of the event, Alexandra Bottos Economou and Kelli Aivazoglou for the preparation of the Gala and the coordination of the event, as well as Michael Manatos and his family.
Board members and their sponsors all share this driving force to make a difference in our community, hopefully for years to come.