Serving the Roma Community
- Athens, Greece
- Ministry Type:
- Children and YouthChurch DevelopmentOutreach and Evangelism
The Petalouda Center is an educational community centre which serves the Roma people in Athens (an initiative of Hellenic Ministries)
The Roma community, not too far from downtown Athens, can seem like a different country altogether, but one populated with so many in need of God’s love - a people who are misunderstood, judged, and forgotten. The world puts its limitations and expectations on them, often leading to hopelessness. Problems from the past, which plague their futures, include the lack of education and social inclusion, leading to a lack of jobs and income. Many are without running water, power or permanent home structures. Furthermore, substance abuse, child labour, and participation in child marriage does not aid their inclusion into society.
Transformational change takes a long time. However, through an emphasis on education and relational opportunities, Hellenic Ministries has opened the doors of the Petalouda (Butterfly) Educational Centre. The same way a caterpillar wants to fly but needs time and nurture, we hope to nurture this community and share the transformational power of Christ by helping them with things they never thought possible - reading, writing, applying for jobs, learning new skills, and more!
The practical goal of Petalouda is to help each of the children gain self-confidence and the desire to attend the local Greek government schools and complete their education. We also extend our help to the adults in this community as there is much desire to learn!
ECM Team member, Luciana, is the Project Director and, together with her husband Giorgos, would love to see a church planted in the Roma community one day.
More information: hellenicministries.org/petaloudacenter