Foundation of a 'CLEAN MANI ' association

First public meeting of the new 'CLEAN MANI' Assoc.on June 9th 2017


Around 25 people gathered at the old school in lower Riglia, to hear the objectives and proposals being made by the founding group**. The main purpose of this initial meeting was to formally establish the association.

As well as individuals from the Greek and ex-pat community, there were  representatives from local businesses such as Saranteas Sotirios, representatives from various other associations including Gaia, and the Cultural Assocs of Ag Nikolaos, Kastania and Proastio.While the presentation and discussion was mainly in Greek, a summary was given in English, by Evangelos Katsouleas

Members of the founding group explained  the reason for their initiative  ie the on-going garbage crisis in Mani, and their plans so far.

Although there are many individuals and groups, working to improve our environment, it is felt that only by working together, will it be possible to overcome any of  the major garbage challenges  facing our community. Even so, it was stressed that the Assoc. will not be able to tackle all the problems, and any efforts will be limited to the W Mani area. It was stressed that the new association is for ALL who care about our environment, and is not affiliated to any Political group.

The aims include working with the W Mani Dimos, but also to put pressure on the Dimos to 'do their bit', while recognizing that the rubbish is OUR rubbish and the Dimos cannot do all that needs doing, without voluntary help.

A major goal will be to reduce the volume of rubbish we produce - the ultimate long term goal being NO rubbish! This involves changing our attitudes to garbage and viewing it as a resource. In order to achieve this, a big part of the group's work will be to recruit members from schools , businesses, and representatives from all the local villages, as well as motivated individuals willing to help with 'spreading the word'. Key aspects of the education program will be recycling by 'separating at source' and composting.

The Assoc  will be democratic, and any ideas/suggestions will be welcome. However, it was recognized that the group would need expert help and advice. A conference, originally proposed for late June, has been deferred until December 2017. This will be an opportunity to learn from experts involved with various aspects of waste management.

Meanwhile, later this month, they hope to meet with people from Sparti and Patras, who have experience not only in waste management, but also in ways to educate and motivate  the public about waste reduction

The new Assoc. is applying for official status, and a local lawyer has volunteered to prepare the necessary documents, but funding is needed for the registration.

To achieve their goals, the Association is looking for Government/municipal funding, donations from businesses & individuals, and fund raising ideas, but most importantly MEMBERS

Anyone interested in registering their support for this community initiative, will be very welcome. Please send your NAME, email ADDRESS and PHONE number to Dr Sophia.   until the group has official status, and an official email address.

** Details of founding group are at the bottom of this page

June 9th: Message from Dr Sophia:Please come to the meeting in Lower Riglia tonight.
"Dimos employees are cleaning and painting on the main road to Kalamata which is very encouraging... I saw them collecting rubbish and another day painting in Stavropigio, So there is no reason to arrange a cleaning day on the main road at the moment,  but if someone notices a dirty area he can call me  6977 779 314 and we can all go there together and clean."

Although there are groups and individuals who have been working independently to help deal with garbage problems and environmental protection in W Mani, this initiative is  an association for ALL people in the area who are willing to work together to care for our environment and work towards reducing  the huge volumes of waste we all produce. The initiating group (see below) is calling on all the cultural associations of Mani to participate, and help educate the inhabitants of distant villages. 

There will be a meeting on Friday June 9th at 18:00 at the school in Kato Riglia
Anyone interested in becoming a member of the Association or helping to improve our environment, will be very welcome

clean mani logo

Cultural Association for 'CLEAN MANI'
Activation of Citizens for the Environment and
Waste management

West Mani 2-6-2017
Dear Colleagues, residents of the Municipality of West Mani,
We all know the problem of uncontrolled garbage production, from businesses and households, and the serious problem it creates for all of us. The health effects caused by its pollution of the environment from all sorts of waste and the contamination that lurks within, are obvious and tragic.

We all understand that this blight will eventually overwhelm the environment with waste and threaten our tourism economy. In addition, the overproduction of  waste leads to draining of resources from Municipal Authorities that would be useful for Infrastructure projects. Finally, the fines paid by Greece for non complinance with the European Waste Management Directives are exorbitant, and come from all of our pockets.

The irreversibility and arbitrariness that is both the cause and the consequence, Are created by the inconsistency and unwillingness to think not only Ourselves, but society, since we all live in the same place We have an obligation to be interested not only in our own interests but also to We put it in the common good.

All the above and more require us to address this problem. Only if we create awareness in all can we get results.

We know that this is not the first time efforts have been made. Many of us  have made efforts, one way or another, so we think by joining forces in an independent association that suits all, with absolute respect for the ideas of all, and democratic discussion and management, we all will succeed.

The State and the Municipal Authority have their own role and statutory obligation to act on the basis of their laws and resources.

Our role is about all of us, and how we will respond as citizens  That is, we produce the garbage, and how we will mobilize and work together to eliminate this problem.

Let's note two basic principles.

1st The rubbish is ours (and whoever pollutes has to pay)
2nd In  both  European and Greek legislation environmental pollution is prohibited

The Greek environment in particular, is something unique from both a physical and cultural point of view, and we need to preserve it.

Our first decision is to hold a conference, towards the end of June, We will have invited speakers who have been involved with the issue of waste management and will pass on their experiences, and who will each discuss with us for 10 minutes, in order for us to form a good idea of how things are done Some things have already been done.

Then, equipped with all this, we shall see what we can do in this area.

So we ask everyone to participate and we appeal to all of the clubs/groups operating in West Mani to do this too, to give the event  the greatest chance of success. Participation of all will be without personal interests being imposed.  The project will be a task for all of us. Let's prove that we can beautify our place and ensure good life expectancy for our children.

(Dr) Sophia Christofilopoulou,  Kiskiras Christos (ex vice-mayor and ex-principal of the high school in Kardamili), Ilias Moutzouris,( the microbiologist who was working in Stoupa and he is going to work in the new laboratory),  Evangelos Katsouleas (who works for Blauel), Chiouteas George, Eleni Meimetea , Georgia Meimetea, Maria Petropoulou (who is a speech therapist) , George Mantzouneas, Ilias Paliatseas (owner of Aniska and Liakoto hotels in Kardamili), Stavroula Nikoloudi (who is frequently cleaning in Ag Nikolaos, owner of Petrino Villas and member of local cultural association).

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