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Family Give Four Children to State Institution Because It Can’t Feed Them

The number of families living in conditions of extreme poverty is increasing in austerity-ridden Greece even thought there ar eno statistics about it. From time to time we hear of cases that families hand their children to state institution because they simply cannot feed them. The latest incident occurred in Patras, western Greece, and shocked the society. The jobless father of a large family decided to give four out of his ten children to a state institution to have at least a warm meal.

Dimitris Gasparinatos, 45, has no income since his contract at a hospital where he was working as security guard expired one year ago. The family lives in one room house, and an empty refrigerator. The mother is of poor health, the chidlren permanent hungry. The father had to take the hardest decision in his life. 

“We are in a deperate situation,” Dimitris told daily Espresso. ” I give my children to have a better life” he said, noting “I’m not lazy.” But he can’t find a work.

“Everybody is awaiting Christmas with joyful anticipation, my family starves.When I hear my children crying because they’re hungry I want to die” he said.

The desperate father knocked the door of the social services of the Patras municipality. The responsible official helped him to overcome bureaucratic obstacles and now the four children aged 6-10 will find shelter in a children’s institution in Kefalonia.

The society in Patras got shocked by the impoverished family and some charity organisations are going to give a helping hand to the remaining six children and the parents.

This is only one of the many cases of families and households facing serious survival problems. The number of those who can’t afford even one single meal during the day is increasing.  Greek media report even of people who pretend to be sick and seek hospital admission even for one day in order to get a meal and a warm place to sleep.

 That was Greece in the 1950’s, that is Greece in the 2011. Well Done, guys!

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3 comments

  1. These types of stories remind me of the circumstances behind the migration of my relatives; my mother had to sent her youngest siblings to an orphanage after WWII because she couldn’t earn enough money to raise them (their parents dying from Tuberculosis, and they couldn’t afford medical treatment). Now it seems as though history is repeating itself. It’s a shame that people (namely governments) never really learn and repeat the same mistakes.
    I doubt that these children will live a better quality of life within an institution.

    • that’s why people here speak again of ‘occupation by foreign powers’. I know it’s sad, but orphanages and state institutions may supply kids in need at least with a warm meal. Thank you so much for sharing the family sotry with us.

  2. Please tell your readers about http://www.boroume.gr which is a Greek group that helps people in situations like this.

    Regarding this story, But, it’s not good to have these children seperated from their family and father. Couldn’t they get a warm meal and then go back home and be with the family?

    What about the Greek church with all that money???? No Priest in Patras can help? I just don’t understand…..